Trust Pleased With Bullying Nurse Ban

A nurse who was struck off for bullying elderly patients in his care says he will not let the matter lie. An inquiry at the Old Bailey in London heard how Norman Pearce (59) kneed, shoved and kicked patients while he was on duty.

The Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) made the decision to strike Pearce off the register after hearing how he regularly used aggressive and intimidating language to a selection of patients.

People in his care included elderly men and women suffering from conditions such as dementia and mental health problems. However, Pearce, talking yesterday from his home in Bretton, said he would be going back to the NMC.

He said: “I am not happy and I will be taking this matter up with the authorities at the NMC. This was three years ago now. I just want to get on with my life.” He declined to make any further comment.

The Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust, which employed Pearce, welcomed the move to strike him off the register. Chief executive Karen Bell said: “We welcome the Nursing and Midwifery Council’s decision. The welfare of our patients is paramount and we will not tolerate, under any circumstances, ill-treatment or abuse of patients under our care.”

The trust said that, following a disciplinary hearing in 1998, Pearson had been “closely supervised”. It said it there were a number of measures in place to protect users, including policies which make it clear what abuse is and how it can be spotted.

A spokesman said: “When allegations against Mr Pearce were made three years ago we immediately suspended him from his job as we take such matters extremely seriously. As a consequence, we undertook a disciplinary investigation in line with NHS and our own trust policies. Mr Pearce resigned from his post.

“We subsequently referred the case to the Nursing and Midwifery Council, which led to this professional misconduct hearing. We have worked closely with the Peterborough Local Authority since 2004 to significantly strengthen its vulnerable adult protection arrangements and practice, and to support patients, relatives and staff in raising concerns.

“We expect all our staff to respect and be courteous and considerate to users of the service and we provide extensive training in all aspects of care. We have good systems and when we find a problem we act quickly. Despite these stringent measures to protect our service users, there are sadly some people who do not treat patients as we wish.”

The trust said there had been three separate disciplinary hearings on its staff over the last 12 months.