Nurse did not give patient proper care

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A NIGHT nurse at a South Yorkshire hospital who did not give proper treatment to a dying woman faces being kicked out of the profession.

Eileen Worton failed to carry out basic observations or ensure the frail 74-year-old received enough fluids when she complained of nausea and began retching.

A string of charges relating to her care of ‘Patient A’ at Barnsley Hospital were found proved at a misconduct hearing in central London.

But the 64-year-old nurse was cleared of making a ‘unilateral decision to withdraw treatment’ by a Nursing and Midwifery Council panel.

Patient A died on March 9, 2007, after she was admitted to Barnsley Hospital.

An inquest concluded there were issues regarding the lack of care in the final hours of the woman’s life, but it was ‘more likely than not’ she would have died in any event.

Worton claimed she wanted to make Patient A as comfortable as possible because she was in the final hours of her life and ‘didn’t want to cause inconvenience by making observations.’

But in a statement, she admitted her judgement was ‘not what it should have been during the shift’.

The panel ran out of time while considering the case.

If found guilty of misconduct she could be struck off.

Worton had worked at the NHS trust since 1977, and was employed as a senior staff nurse on ward 33 of Barnsley Hospital, which treated orthopaedic patients.

Worton was suspended after the incident but resigned before a full probe could take place, and has not worked in nursing since 2007.

The NMC panel found Worton guilty of failing to record an assessment that patient A was ‘approaching the end stages of her life’ at the start of her night shift and failed to carry out vital observations between 8.30pm and 7.45am.

Charges that she did not adequately monitor the woman’s fluid intake and urine output, did not take action to ensure she received enough fluids though an IV drip and did not record that Patient A had vomited and needed a change of clothes were also found proved.

She was cleared of making a conscious decision to withdraw treatment and failing to give the patient an anti-vomiting drug, although the panel ruled the standard of care had been ‘poor’.

No date has yet been set for the resumed hearing, but it is unlikely to take place before March 2012.