Nurse misconduct at abortion clinic

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A NURSE who worked in a South Yorkshire abortion clinic has received a caution for giving a woman medication to which she was allergic.

Jayne Woolhouse also induced a termination in another patient without getting the procedure signed off by two doctors - a legal requirement.

And just days later, she failed to update the patient’s records after prescribing drugs, the Nursing and Midwifery Council heard.

She also gave another patient the all-clear after carrying out a scan and failing to spot remnants of a pregnancy had been left behind, which caused internal bleeding.

The incidents happened when Woolhouse was a sister in the Pregnancy Advisory Service, based at Rotherham Hospital.

Helen Fleck, for the Nursing and Midwifery Council, told the tribunal Woolhouse was suspended in June 2009 after colleague Jennie Swift raised concerns.

Woolhouse admitted giving a painkilling suppository to a woman who was allergic to the medication. Details of the patient’s allergy were in her medical notes, but Woolhouse had failed to read them. She also admitted failing to obtain signatures from two doctors for another woman’s abortion, by getting only one doctor to sign it off.

The NMC panel found her guilty of misconduct and ruled her fitness to practice was impaired.

Panel chairman Elspeth Metcalfe said: “There may have been an element of complacency in her actions - she was an experienced nurse who knew the standards required of her.”

Handing her a three-year caution order, Ms Metcalfe added: “Although there is evidence Ms Woolhouse’s failings did cause patient harm, there has been no evidence that, although isolated, these actions were deliberate. She made early admissions and apologised for her failings.

“A three-year caution would show the importance of maintaining public confidence and send a clear message about the standards required.”