Nurse may work again despite hitting patient

Nursing Midwifery Council

Nursing Midwifery Council

First published in News

A MENTAL health nurse who shoved a patient in the face after a row about a cigarette lighter has been allowed to work without restriction.

Carl Larbi, who worked on Wenrick Ward of Littlemore Hospital, Oxford, was taking the patient for a cigarette break when the incident happened.

The patient thumped Larbi across the head from behind when he said he did not have a lighter, a tribunal heard.

Larbi responded by giving the man a sharp shove across the face, leaving red marks to his face and neck last July. He did not record the incident, which only came to light when a colleague noticed the man’s injuries.

Larbi, who had worked there since 2003, was sacked after bosses saw CCTV of the incident. A Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) panel ruled that it was misconduct but that his fitness to practice was not impaired.

Frederick Hookway, for Larbi, said he reacted to be being struck and had taken training on maintaining self-control.

Panel chairman Clive Powell told him: “The panel considers your failure to document the incident and mention at handover breached a fundamental tenant requirement in the nursing profession to enable safe, effective and continuous care.”

They said Larbi’s response was a “reflex action” and did not appear to be with “great force”.

The ward is for adults with long-term mental health problems and a history of involvement with the police and courts.

Lorcan O’Neill, spokesman for Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust, which runs the hospital, said it investigated and referred the issue to the NMC.

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