Care home boss in ‘slapping’ case

Hearing: Jane Harris.

Hearing: Jane Harris.

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A CARE home manager who was prosecuted for mistreating residents in a Doncaster home could now be struck off the nursing register.

Jane Harris, aged 46, forced learning disabilities patients to slap a woman in the face, a Nursing and Midwifery Council hearing was told.

John Lucarotti, for the NMC, said she used the patients’ hands to ‘punish’ their 46-year-old fellow resident for pulling people’s hair.

Colleagues reported the abuse after the patients appeared visibly distressed, and Harris was later charged with wilfully ill-treating or neglecting a person who lacks capacity.

In 2009 she became only the second person to be convicted under the provisions of the new Mental Capacity Act.

Harris, who has 23 years of nursing experience, was handed a six-month prison sentence for each offence, suspended for 18 months.

Mr Lucarotti, for the NMC, said three separate incidents had taken place while Harris was working as the manager of a care home at 88 Travis Gardens in Hexthorpe, Doncaster.

“There were eight residents who were based in the care home, and they were all said to have suffered from severe learning difficulties,” he said.

“Criminal charges were brought against Mr Harris as a result of the reports of a number of incidents that are said to have taken place in the summer of 2007.”

All of them involved a 46-year-old woman known as Resident A, the hearing was told, who had severe learning difficulties, and would often try to pull on other residents’ hair.

“This was ill treatment and abuse by a person who was charged with ensuring these residents were well cared for.”

Harris, of Priory Close, Conisbrough, did not attend the hearing or make any formal admissions to the charges.

She faces being given a warning, being suspended or being struck off if found guilty of misconduct.

The hearing continues.

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