‘Aggressive’ nurse could be struck off

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A NURSE left two patients with learning disabilities unsupervised while she tidied her car and listened to music, a professional misconduct hearing was told.

Cheryl Lewis, aged 50, allegedly also used excessive force to control a patient while working at the Elliott Centre, a day care facility in Rotherham.

Lewis, who was dismissed from the centre for gross misconduct, now faces being struck off by the Nursing and Midwifery Council.

Rachna Gokani, for the council, said Lewis was caught clearing out the boot of her car in February 2008, when she should have been looking after two regular visitors to the centre.

One had learning difficulties and used a wheelchair and the other suffered from severe mental and physical disabilities.

Both were entirely dependent on staff and needed to be watched at all times.

Lewis, who qualified as a nurse in 2003, also faces a series of other allegations relating to her employment at Rotherham Community Health Services NHS Trust.

In November 2008 she had been looking after a patient who was swearing and spitting at her.

She loudly berated him and refused to return a hat and toy she had seized.

Ms Gokani said: “This was a patient with whom it was important to maintain a calm approach.

“She had worked with him for a period of a year and knew his care plan.”

Lewis admits acting aggressively towards that patient, but denies the other charges.

She accepts her ability to work was impaired at the time, but insists it no longer remains so. The hearing continues.