Nurse is fired after she steals two tablets to treat headaches during NHS shifts The Telegraph

A nurse was fired after she was found to be in stealing two tablets from the pharmacy in a hospital in order to relieve headaches she was suffering from while on an NHS shift.

Francesca Morgan, 32, illegally took a co-codamol tablet and followed by a paracetamol tablet when she was sick while employed at Arrowe Park Hospital, near Liverpool.

Police started an investigation when health professionals noticed that prescription medicines were missing. Managers set up a tablet count in place at the close of each day without the staff not being aware.

The police set up a hidden camera to aid in the investigation. It caught Morgan taking the drugs, but prosecutors insist that she wasn’t accused of the theft of all the medication.

It was discovered that she had taken the medication without obtaining authorization in writing, based in the “assumption” that she was permitted to take the medication and other staff members were also found not to follow the correct procedures when handling the medication.

Morgan who is from Woolton, Liverpool, appeared in Wirral Magistrates’ court in Liverpool where she admitted to two theft charges committed by an employees in the period June 6 to June 18 last year.

Covert camera put in place

Yvonne Dobson, prosecuting, stated: “The hospital began an investigation because of the huge amount of medications that required replenishment. Tablet count systems were put into place to measure the amount of medication taken between the start and the end of every day.

“That was implemented without the information of the personnel.

“Following the incident, a secret camera was installed. Staff were discovered to not follow the proper procedure regarding the handling of medications.

“The suspect was found taking medications without a valid justification.

“She took the medicine to use for herself. In the first instance she took a co-codamol. The second time, the medication was paracetamol.”

Miss Dobson stated that she had been seen taking tablets while drinking drinks.

“We don’t accuse her of the complete fraud,” said the prosecutor. “These are two isolated instances. She believed she was able to impliedly consented to taking the medication. There was no evidence of previous convictions but she’s lost her good character.”

Nurse loses her job and her home

The defense attorney, Laura Flynn told the jury that Morgan was laid off from work and career because of the thefts. She lost her home as well and is now living with her grandmother.

The solicitor stated that the client was experiencing headaches during shifts and was of the opinion that it was acceptable to use the medication as many other nurses had done so.

The magistrates approved the conditional discharge of 12 months and required her to payments of PS144 in costs as well as a victim surcharge.

“You have already been through losing your work as well as the house you live in,” said Peter Mawdsley who is the chairman of the court. “In this context an order for a conditional discharge is just.”

The hospital has refused to discuss Morgan’s resignation or any subsequent charges.