Nurse struck off for force-feeding patient

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A care home nurse has been struck from the register for force feeding an “elderly and vulnerable” patient.

Maureen Mwongirwe is found to have forced a resident at an Edinburgh care home to consume food and medicine against her will.

The report from the Conduct and Competence Committee of the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) states that Mwongirwe’s “fitness to practice is impaired by reason of misconduct”.

The incident took place while Mwongirwe was employed by Southern Cross Healthcare as a staff nurse at Murrayfield House, Edinburgh on 16 June 2008.

The committee found Mwongirwe “forced medication into the resident’s mouth with a spoon and forced chocolate mousse into her mouth with a spoon”.

Mwongirwe was not present and not represented at the Substantive Order Review Hearing on Friday 18th July.

Previously Mwongirwe had been given a suspension order of 12 months, imposed on 26 July 2013.

A review panel was ordered to find if Mwongirwe’s “fitness to practice remains impaired”.

The panel noted that Mwongirwe had not engaged with the NMC proceedings since the substantive hearing.

The panel considered that she was aware of the hearing and was aware that she needed to “show the panel that she had gained insight into her actions”.

The panel found after consideration of the initial misconduct and subsequent indiscretion, Mwongirwe was stuck off the register.

Mwongirwe was told: “This was a very serious incident where you forced food and medicine into the mouth of an elderly, vulnerable resident causing visible distress to her and to one of your colleagues.

“You told the panel that you thought the matter had ‘gone away’ until 2012 when you were contacted by the NMC about it.”

It was decided that Mwongirwe had “not reflected on [her] actions or how others perceived [her] actions in the intervening period”.

The outcome of the latest hearing ordered Mwongirwe to be struck off the register on expiry of the current suspension order.