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Struck off: nurse who hid conviction for assaulting woman aged 70

Bank nurse convicted of assaulting older woman causing actual bodily harm during a row at a working men’s club failed to disclose the crime to her employer and the NMC
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Bank nurse convicted of assaulting older woman causing actual bodily harm during a row at a working men’s club failed to disclose the crime to her employer and the NMC

A bank nurse who failed to tell her employer she had a criminal conviction for assault has been struck off.

Stephanie Atkinson pushed a 70-year-old woman to the floor at Trades Working Men’s Club in Barnsley in November 2018 during a disagreement. The woman sustained a broken femur and required surgery.

Ms Atkinson was given a 20-week sentence suspended for 12 months by magistrates in South Yorkshire in October 2019. But she failed to notify NHS Professionals and the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) of her conviction, telling a fitness to practise (FtP)

Bank nurse convicted of assaulting older woman causing actual bodily harm during a row at a working men’s club failed to disclose the crime to her employer and the NMC

Picture: iStock

A bank nurse who failed to tell her employer she had a criminal conviction for assault has been struck off.

Stephanie Atkinson pushed a 70-year-old woman to the floor at Trades Working Men’s Club in Barnsley in November 2018 during a disagreement. The woman sustained a broken femur and required surgery.

Ms Atkinson was given a 20-week sentence suspended for 12 months by magistrates in South Yorkshire in October 2019. But she failed to notify NHS Professionals and the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) of her conviction, telling a fitness to practise (FtP) panel that shame and embarrassment had stopped her from doing so.

Her conviction was later discovered by the NMC following a separate unrelated referral of Ms Atkinson by a member of the public, prompting the NMC to carry out a police check in June 2020.

Dishonesty

An FtP hearing on 9 and 10 May, heard how the assault had been Ms Atkinson’s first criminal conviction, and probation officers deemed her to be a low-risk offender.

However the panel found that although she had expressed remorse and had admitted her actions in full, her dishonesty in failing to disclose the conviction fell seriously below the standards expected of a nurse.

Lack of reflection or insight

The panel report noted: ‘Miss Atkinson accepted she acted dishonestly in failing to notify her employer and the NMC of her conviction and that she said she failed to do so because she was ‘embarrassed’ and ‘ashamed’.

‘The panel considered that Miss Atkinson, while clearly remorseful, demonstrated limited insight into why she had made the decision to conceal her conviction from both her employer and the NMC.

‘She had not provided evidence that she had reflected fully on her misconduct and therefore the panel concluded that there was a real risk of repetition in terms of dishonesty.’

Ms Atkinson was struck off the nurse register and given 28 days to appeal.


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