MRSA nurse ‘put patients at risk’ tribunal is told

A HOSPITAL nurse risked infecting frail care home residents with MRSA by moonlighting in a second job while on sick leave, a tribunal heard yesterday.

Annielyn Campos, aged 41, knew she had contracted the superbug when she carried out two shifts at a privately-run nursing home, it is claimed.

She allegedly worked in the second job for more than 16 months without the knowledge of her NHS managers.

Campos, who had worked at the Royal Bolton Hospital’s neonatal unit since October, 2002, is also said to have worked “excessive” hours with back-to-back shifts.

John Lucarotti, for the Nursing and Midwifery Council, said that working at care homes even after her diagnosis with MRSA had “placed patients at risk”.

He added: “The NMC say that this is behaviour which was both dangerous and dishonest, given the risk of infection to the residents of the nursing home.”

The panel heard her contract of employment with the Bolton Hospitals NHS Trust prohibited her from taking on a second job without first consulting her manager.

Her moonlighting for the Four Seasons Nursing Home in Breightmet was discovered by Janice Lovell, a manager with the Trust, in April, 2008.

Ms Lovell discovered that Campos had worked a total of 286 hours in November, 2007, 236 hours in December, 347 hours in January, 355 hours in February, and 364 hours in March.

She realised that Campos had worked two shifts at different homes on March 7 and 8 despite the hospital having sent her home on paid sick leave upon her diagnosis with MRSA, the panel heard.

The nurse was allegedly told she must not work for at least 48 hours while a vaccine took effect, but she denies she was ever given this warning.

Campos, from Manchester, admits working for Southern Cross Nursing between September, 2006 and April, 2008 without informing, or seeking permission from, her NHS bosses.

She also admits working a single shift at the Astley Grange Care Home, Bolton, when she knew she was MRSA positive.

Campos denies having known of her diagnosis when she worked a shift at the Four Seasons home the previous day and insists the Bolton Hospitals NHS Trust did not warn her against working.

She also denies working while on sick leave, wearing her NHS uniform to work at the Four Seasons home, and taking on “excessive”

hours.

Campos maintains that her actions did not constitute misconduct and says she is fit to practise.

The central London hearing continues.

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