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ITU nurse wins ten-year battle to clear her name

ITU nurse wins ten-year battle to clear her name Her conviction was quashed by the Court of Appeal last week after judges heard that the crucial report by expert witness Harry Schroeder was ‘fundamentally flawed’. Peter Joyce QC, who prosecuted the original trial, admitted the evidence was ‘misleading and inaccurate’. He said Dr Schroeder also admits he ‘got it wrong’. Dr Schroeder had devised a mathematical formula to show that the ventilator of Ms Jenkinson’s patient, Kathleen Temple, had been tampered with while she was on duty. His conclusions were undermined by new evidence from consultant anaesthetist Alan Aitkenhead, whose findings showed the patient’s deterioration began at least five hours after Ms Jenkinson went off duty. Ms Jenkinson’s barrister Paul Watson QC told the Appeal Court that Dr Schroeder had shown ‘a lack of understanding of the workings’ of the ventilator in question. Quashing the conviction, Lord Justice Tuckey said the court had come to the ‘clear conclusion’ it was unsafe. In a statement issued following the verdict Ms Jenkinson said: ‘I feel utter sadness and disappointment with a profession that I held in such high regard. I was once described by fellow colleagues as “the perfect nurse”. Well if this is how a hard-working nurse is treated it is a sad reflection on a distinguished profession.’ Support system: Amanda Jenkinson (second left) with her brother Jeremy (left), sister-in-law Denise, friend Fwed Collins and nephew Liam Jenkinson Ms Jenkinson, who is no longer working in a caring role, was a member of the RCN. A college spokesperson said: ‘We are pleased with the outcome.’ Unison declined to comment. A Nottinghamshire Police spokesperson said: ‘We are satisfied that the prosecution was properly brought, based on the evidence available at that time. We concede that in the light of new evidence it is unsafe to rely on some of that evidence to sustain the conviction.’ Ms Jenkinson’s former employer, now Doncaster and Bassetlaw Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, issued a statement saying: ‘The criminal investigation began more than ten years ago, after entirely proper concerns were raised by our staff about the possibility of interference with medical equipment. ‘The prosecution was brought by Nottinghamshire Police, based on the evidence that was available at that time.’ See news pages 6-7 http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Nursing Standard Royal College of Nursing (RCN)

ITU nurse wins ten-year battle to clear her name

Nursing Standard , Volume 20 (11) – Nov 29, 2005

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Publisher
Royal College of Nursing (RCN)
Copyright
©2012 RCN Publishing Company Ltd. All rights reserved. Not to be copied, transmitted or recorded in any way, in whole or part, without prior permission of the publishers.
Subject
News
ISSN
0029-6570
eISSN
2047-9018
DOI
10.7748/ns.20.11.5.s2
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Her conviction was quashed by the Court of Appeal last week after judges heard that the crucial report by expert witness Harry Schroeder was ‘fundamentally flawed’. Peter Joyce QC, who prosecuted the original trial, admitted the evidence was ‘misleading and inaccurate’. He said Dr Schroeder also admits he ‘got it wrong’. Dr Schroeder had devised a mathematical formula to show that the ventilator of Ms Jenkinson’s patient, Kathleen Temple, had been tampered with while she was on duty. His conclusions were undermined by new evidence from consultant anaesthetist Alan Aitkenhead, whose findings showed the patient’s deterioration began at least five hours after Ms Jenkinson went off duty. Ms Jenkinson’s barrister Paul Watson QC told the Appeal Court that Dr Schroeder had shown ‘a lack of understanding of the workings’ of the ventilator in question. Quashing the conviction, Lord Justice Tuckey said the court had come to the ‘clear conclusion’ it was unsafe. In a statement issued following the verdict Ms Jenkinson said: ‘I feel utter sadness and disappointment with a profession that I held in such high regard. I was once described by fellow colleagues as “the perfect nurse”. Well if this is how a hard-working nurse is treated it is a sad reflection on a distinguished profession.’ Support system: Amanda Jenkinson (second left) with her brother Jeremy (left), sister-in-law Denise, friend Fwed Collins and nephew Liam Jenkinson Ms Jenkinson, who is no longer working in a caring role, was a member of the RCN. A college spokesperson said: ‘We are pleased with the outcome.’ Unison declined to comment. A Nottinghamshire Police spokesperson said: ‘We are satisfied that the prosecution was properly brought, based on the evidence available at that time. We concede that in the light of new evidence it is unsafe to rely on some of that evidence to sustain the conviction.’ Ms Jenkinson’s former employer, now Doncaster and Bassetlaw Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, issued a statement saying: ‘The criminal investigation began more than ten years ago, after entirely proper concerns were raised by our staff about the possibility of interference with medical equipment. ‘The prosecution was brought by Nottinghamshire Police, based on the evidence that was available at that time.’ See news pages 6-7

Journal

Nursing StandardRoyal College of Nursing (RCN)

Published: Nov 29, 2005

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