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Nurse Found Not Guilty Of Professional Misconduct Following UK Common Assault Conviction
Date Posted: 08/Oct/2017
An Irish nurse has been found not guilty of professional misconduct following a fitness-to-practice inquiry by the Nursing and Midwifery Board.
 
Nurse Mary Majella Kenny was before the inquiry following an alleged assault on a patient in Britain in 2013. She qualified in Ireland in 2010 and faced one allegation of professional misconduct, in that she was convicted of common assault in Britain.
 
Nurse Kenny told the inquiry she believes she was wrongly convicted in Britain.
 
The inquiry heard that Ms Kenny had been working for the Surrey and Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust for 22 months. She was tried and found guilty there of two counts of common assault on a hospital patient, on 3 January 2013.
 
The only allegation before the inquiry was that Ms Kenny was convicted.
 
Ms Kenny was self-represented at the Nursing and Midwifery Board inquiry and she challenged the underlying facts that gave rise to the conviction.
 
She said she had paid a huge price for the events and is not practising in Ireland.
 
Eileen Barrington, senior counsel for the nursing board chief executive, had told the inquiry that Patient X was a vulnerable and confused patient in an acute medical unit.
 
Patient X was prone to falling and did not want to be touched.
 
The alleged incidents occurred when Patient X would not move onto a commode and later when she would not move from the commode to her bed.
 
She said Patient X was not a patient of Ms Kenny but she had joined to help other staff with the patient.
 
It was alleged in the case in Britain that Ms Kenny used force to pull Patient X into the commode and had grabbed her by the arm.
 
The inquiry heard that in Britain she was given a suspended sentence with a 24-month conditional discharge.
 
Nurse Kenny told the inquiry that on the night in question, she had a very busy workload in the acute medical unit.
 
She said it was around 1am and Patient X was quite agitated and unsteady in a bathroom and Ms Kenny was concerned the patient could fall and injure herself. 
 
So she said that she held Patient X by the arm to stop her falling, while moving onto a commode.
 
The situation was the same when she was moving Patient X from the commode to her bed.
Source: rti.ie

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