AN incompetent Winchester nurse has been struck off after his lack of care led to the death of a patient.

Leslie Aldridge was working a night shift as a nurse at Winchester Prison in August 2015 and failed to spot that an inmate had suffered a methadone overdose.

Mr Aldridge, a Band 5 nurse, did not undertake basic checks and the prisoner died in his sleep, a hearing heard. The inmate was not named in the NMC report.

All Mr Aldridge had done was roll the patient on his side when "any reasonably competent nurse would, in my opinion, have attempted to rouse [Prisoner A] and gain a verbal response from him", ruled the NMC.

"A consultant psychiatrist notes in her report that ‘If Mr Aldridge had carried out further observations (or indeed gone back to the cell to give the diazepam)when [Prisoner A] was found snoring and unrousable in the cell on 16 August 2015 then it is also possible that the death could have been averted”.

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The NMC then heard that Mr Aldridge tried to mislead investigators claiming he had undertaken checks and that he had returned to the cell.

The report said: "Instead of telling the truth when first confronted and owning up that he had incorrectly signed medication charts showing medication had been administered, he proceeded to lie until faced with evidence to the contrary. This may well have led to delays in the investigation and the requirement for further, unnecessary, work to be carried out."

The police investigated the death. Mr Aldridge was not charged or cautioned in respect of any offence arising out of the death.

An NMC hearing in London heard that Mr Aldridge had not attended or been represented at any disciplinary hearing since 2108 saying that he intended to retire from nursing.

The NMC ruled that he was guilty of misconduct and imposed an 18-month interim suspension order.


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