Nurse struck off for not calling 999 - three times

NADV 14025281AM Bilton Hall Nursing Home (14025281AM1)
NADV 14025281AM Bilton Hall Nursing Home (14025281AM1)

A nurse who failed to dial 999 for three collapsed pensioners in six months has been struck off.

Reynaldo Santos found one elderly resident collapsed and ‘warm but not breathing’ at around 4am at Bilton Hall Nursing Home in Harrogate, a hearing was told.

But he telephoned the out of hours GP service and did not immediately start CPR because he was ‘convinced that Resident A was already dead’, the Nursing and Midwifery Council heard.

Just two months later he called the GP service rather than paramedics when a pensioner was found with breathing difficulties.

Santos caused a delay to the ambulance arriving at the home, although the tribunal concluded there was no evidence linking the delay to the pensioner’s subsequent death.

In June 2011, a healthcare assistant alerted Santos to a resident who was no longer breathing, but again he chose to telephone the out of hours GP service.

In a further incident, Santos failed to check a resident’s medication before administering it to them, the hearing was told.

‘Resident D’ was allergic to the Amoxicillin, which had been prescribed by a GP, and subsequently suffered breathing difficulties and died.

Santos, who did not attend the tribunal in central London, apologised before the hearing.

“I take full responsibility for all my failings identified in 2011 while employed at Bilton Hall Nursing Home,” he said.

“I am sorry for failing my responsibility as a nurse at that time and for the shame I caused my profession.”

Panel chair Clive Powell said: “The panel considers that Mr Santos’ conduct put patients at risk of significant harm through his failures to respond appropriately in emergency situations on three separate occasions.

“His actions in administering medication to a resident which she was allergic to, and then failing to inform a colleague that the medication had been administered put that resident at severe risk of harm. Such misconduct did indeed bring the profession into disrepute as illustrated by the concerns raised in relation to Mr Santos’ conduct which led to the referral to the NMC.

“Additionally, in the panel’s judgment, the public at large, in possession of reasonable knowledge of the facts, would be most concerned about Mr Santos’ failures to act in an emergency situation, as well as his failures in drug administration.

“Mr Santos has also breached fundamental tenets of the nursing profession, namely the requirement to put patient’s safety first and to provide a high standard of care at all times. Mr Santos’ failures amount to a breach of a fundamental tenet of the profession which encompasses protection of patients and upholding the reputation and public confidence in the profession.”

Santos was struck off the register and will not be able to apply for restoration for five years.