Pinderfields Hospital nurse faces sanctions

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A nurse who told a family their relative had died when they were still alive has been sanctioned.

Virginia Torres was given a Conditions of Practice order for misconduct after a Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) panel found her actions fell “short of what was expected”.

The panel was told that while working at Pinderfields Hospital in 2014, she left one nurse in charge of 39 patients and failed to spot one patient had not opened his bowels for two weeks. A recent NMC judgement said: “The panel had careful regard to the context and circumstances of the matters found proved and determined that those facts found proved amounted to misconduct and that your actions fell short of what would be proper in the circumstances.”

The panel heard Ms Torres, a nurse of 16 years, caused a granddaughter distress when she told them their relative had died when they were still alive on a date before 2012. It was told she failed to carry out or record observations for eight hours on one patient, which placed him “at risk of harm”.

Ms Torres was also found to have not effectively dealt with one patient’s low blood sugar levels in 2014.

The NMC judgment said: “The panel recognised that witnesses for the NMC gave evidence that, at the time of these incidents, it had been a stressful experience working on the ward due to the understaffed environment.

“The panel took into account that you have embarked on a course of remediation and have taken significant steps to address the areas of concern in relation to your practice.”

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