News

Band 7 nurse jailed for defrauding NHS of more than £18,000

Nurse worked agency shifts while off sick from Aneurin Bevan health board

Nurse worked agency shifts while off sick from Aneurin Bevan health board


Picture: iStock

A Band 7 nurse was sentenced to eight months in prison for working agency shifts while claiming sick leave that amounted to £18,573.

Mental health nurse Rebecca Topczylko-Evans, of Pant, Merthyr Tydfil, was employed by Aneurin Bevan University Health Board (ABUHB) in South Wales as part of the community mental health team.

Long period of sickness absence

She went off sick from 21 February until 13 August 2018 and again in November that year.

But during these periods, she worked for the Andover Nursing Services agency and carried out 53 shifts in various workplaces.

Multiple reference requests raised employer’s suspicions

According to the NHS Counter Fraud Authority, suspicions were raised when Ms Topczylko-Evans’ line manager at ABUHB received frequent reference requests for the nurse.

‘The NHS will take appropriate action against any member of staff who behaves in this manner’

Spokesperson, Aneurin Bevan University Health Board

One of the managers of a nursing home at which she worked shifts contacted the health board about its policy on employees working while claiming sick pay.

Ms Topczylko-Evans pleaded guilty to fraud by false representation on 4 November at Merthyr Tydfil Magistrates Court before being sentenced at Merthyr Tydfil Crown Court.

‘Nurse’s dishonesty was indefensible’

An ABUHB spokesperson said: ‘This type of conduct on the part of an NHS employee is dishonest, indefensible and unacceptable.

‘The NHS will take appropriate action against any member of staff who behaves in this manner.’

The nurse’s name remains on the NMC register. 

NMC director of FtP Matthew McClelland said: 'When concerns are raised about people on our register, we always consider them carefully and take appropriate regulatory action if necessary.'


In other news

This is a free article for registered users

This article is not available as part of an institutional subscription. Why is this? You can register for free access.

Jobs