Nurse Put Patient's Glass Eye in Coca-Cola

The Birmingham Post (England), February 14, 2006 | Go to article overview

Nurse Put Patient's Glass Eye in Coca-Cola


A nurse put a patient's glass eye in a cup of Coca-Cola to give to a colleague as a practical joke, a disciplinary panel heard yesterday.

Christine Mitchelson, 53, is also accused of drawing a face on another patient's hernia and of making racist remarks about Filipina nurses.

The nurse, from Newcastle upon Tyne, has denied 12 allegations of misconduct which are being heard by the Nursing and Midwifery Council's conduct and competence committee.

Committee members decided to hold the hearing in London in Mitchelson's absence after hearing she had declined to attend, citing ill health.

The allegations against the nurse date from between late 2001 and early 2004 when she was working at Newcastle's Royal Victoria Infirmary.

Piers Arnold, representing the NMC, said they came to light in February, 2004, when a health care assistant named Denise Lake made a complaint about Mitchelson.

An investigation was launched and "numerous allegations" against her were made by other nurses and health care assistants on her ward, he said.

Mr Arnold said the allegations could be divided into five broad categories:

Rough and degrading treatment of patients, including deliberate assaults

Failing to record patient observations correctly and encouraging health care assistants to adopt the same practice

Racist remarks about work colleagues

Incorrect administration of drugs to patients

Other inappropriate and unprofessional actions apparently carried out as practical jokes but causing offence to those involved

Mitchelson is accused of giving her colleague Pauline Stanton, the sister on the ward, a cup of Coca-Cola containing a patient's glass eye. …

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