Patient Records on Post-It Notes; Therapist Kept Vital Info on Scraps of Paper

Sunday Mercury (Birmingham, England), May 9, 2010 | Go to article overview

Patient Records on Post-It Notes; Therapist Kept Vital Info on Scraps of Paper


Byline: JONNY GREATREX

AN occupational therapist who kept patient records on Post-It notes has been allowed to continue working after admitting misconduct charges for lapse record keeping.

Stella Gibson, from Southam, Warwickshire, was hauled before bosses at the Health Professionals Council (HPC) after she was found to have used the small bits of paper to keep crucial information.

At a hearing in London, she admitted six misconduct charges relating to the lapse record keeping.

They included not signing and dating notes, or keeping them in chronological order, while working as the lead occupational therapist for South Warwickshire General Hospitals NHS Trust between June 2007 and September 2008.

Mrs Gibson, who is in her 50s, also stored patient records in a locked cabinet, making it dif-ficult for her colleagues to access them.

"At the time relevant to these allegations Mrs Gibson, was employed by the Warwickshire General Hospitals NHS Trust," the panel said.

"Consistent with Mrs Gibson's admissions we find that her notes were deficient in the respects alleged by the charges.

"The clear decision of the panel is that they demonstrate misconduct.

"Mrs Gibson knew full well how to compile proper notes and that she should have been doing so.

"The fact that she did not do so breached Standard 10 of the HPC's Standards of Conduct, Performance and Ethics.

"That this failure arose against a background of a heavy workload, significant changes in the service structure and personal stress may go Serious some way to explain them, but these factors do not constitute an excuse. …

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