Paramedic struck off for misconduct

A PARAMEDIC who left a baby born in a toilet to die has been struck off for a second case of misconduct.

South East Coast Ambulance employee Andrew Read ‘failed to appreciate the severity of the situation’ as former postman Antony Fenn, 47, lay dying in the street with a fractured skull, it emerged this week.

During a two-day hearing at the Health Professions Council, Mr Fenn’s widow Patricia claimed the paramedic gave her husband ‘no treatment’.

The alarm had been raised after Mr Fenn was found lying on a pavement in a pool of blood in Brightling Road, Ore, having fallen and hit his head just 50 yards from his home on the Downs Estate.

Mrs Fenn told the hearing Read’s ‘attitude changed completely’ after she told him her husband was an alcoholic.

The hearing was told Read failed to stabilise the patient with a collar, spinal board or special vacuum mattress or give the patient any oxygen until he was placed in an ambulance.

Mr Fenn died from his injuries in hospital two days later.

The panel ruled Read’s actions on June 28, 2009, amounted to misconduct by failing to carry out proper assessment of the patient or provide adequate care or complete the appropriate paperwork, and that his behaviour was unprofessional.

Christopher Whalley, for the HPC, told the panel Read had been found guilty in a separate misconduct hearing two years before. He said: “Firstly the allegations are similar in nature - he failed to act in the best interest of patients, give appropriate care and keep accurate records.”

In April 2006, Mr Read, 53, was given a two-year caution by the council in 2007 following an incident involving a baby in the Hastings and Rye area.

He had been called to a home where a woman had just given birth and her child had slipped into a toilet.

Mr Read retreieved the baby from the toilet, put it in a clinical waste bag and later handed it to hospital staff without trying to save it, saying it would ‘probably have been brain-damaged’.

The HPC said this week: “Whilst striking off is a sanction of last resort, the panel is satisfied it has no alternative.”