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Suspension for misappropriating patient's money.


A registered nurse (RN) who was found guilty of having misappropriated a wallet containing $170 cash and bank cards from an elderly patient in her care at Rotorua Hospital has been suspended from practice for six months.

She has also been ordered to pay $2000 toward the costs and expenses of the Professional Conduct Committee appointed by the Nursing Council.

The Health Practitioners Disciplinary Tribunal found Rebecca Griffiths guilty of professional misconduct. It said she had breached the standards of trust required of nurses and this had brought, or was Likely to bring, the profession into disrepute.

Griffiths, who was dismissed from her job following the incident, did not attend the Tribunal heating in September last year, nor did she provide any information to refute the charge. Previously, she had told the hospital she had given the wallet and its contents back to the patient.

In making its determination on penalty, the Tribunal referred to other dishonesty cases and took into account expressions of confidence in Griffith's competence as a nurse. It noted that a disciplinary sanction was necessary to protect the public, maintain standards and punish Griffiths.

In addition to the suspension and the order for the contribution to costs, the Tribunal censured Griffiths and imposed a condition that, before a practising certificate was issued, she undertake, at her own expense, an approved Nursing Council course that included professional codes and standards and the role and accountability of an RN.

The full decision can be found on the Tribunals" website, reference Nur10/1509P.

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Title Annotation:DISCIPLINARY NOTICES; Rebecca Griffiths
Publication:Kai Tiaki: Nursing New Zealand
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:8NEWZ
Date:Feb 1, 2011
Previous Article:Registration cancelled for inappropriate relationship.
Next Article:Professional boundaries breached.

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