A snapshot of registered health practitioner misconduct in Victoria: August 2023

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By Stuart Eustice, Partner and Holly White, Associate

Chiropractic Board of Australia v Petridis [2023] VCAT 841 (25 July 2023)

A chiropractor was reprimanded, had his registration cancelled and was disqualified from re-applying for two years and three months after the Tribunal found he had engaged in professional misconduct. The chiropractor had breached conditions on his registration imposed in an earlier investigation, then practised while unregistered, provided false and misleading information to the Board in support of an application for registration, provided false and misleading information to Ahpra and the Board in support of his compliance with conditions imposed on his registration. He was also placed on a diversion program for the offence of theft after stealing from another practitioner and failed to report this to the Board as required by the National Law.

Medical Board of Australia v Carr [2023] (14 August 2023)

A GP was reprimanded and fined $12,000 after the Tribunal found he had engaged in professional misconduct by providing a false and misleading declaration to the Voluntary Assisted Dying Review when he wrongly indicated that a patient’s request to participate in voluntary assisted dying had been properly witnessed. There was no suggestion the patient was ineligible to participate in voluntary assisted dying.

Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia v Allison [2023] VCAT 955 (16 August 2023)

A nurse was reprimanded after the Tribunal found she had engaged in professional misconduct while working in an emergency department by taking her patients’ endone and substituting it with aspirin. The conduct occurred over three days while the nurse was suffering codeine withdrawal. She made immediate and full admissions, took steps to address her addiction, undertook not to practice and later surrendered her registration. While the parties agreed the nurse should be disqualified from re-applying for registration for six months, the Tribunal considered there was no need to impose a disqualification period as the nurse had already not worked as a nurse for three and a half years.

Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia v Kindl [2023] VCAT 981 (23 August 2023)

A nurse was reprimanded, had her registration cancelled and was disqualified from re-applying for two years after the Tribunal found she had engaged in professional misconduct. The nurse had stolen prescription pads, forged prescriptions and obtained oxycodone and endone to satisfy an opioid addiction developed following prescribed opioid use following a surgery. This conduct resulted in criminal charges dealt with by way of diversion. Further, she had made false declarations regarding her recency of practice. She had not practiced for a number of years and had her registration suspended for about four and a half years prior to the hearing.

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