A care home nurse who was facing charges over poor medication management, after giving the wrong dose of insulin to a patient, has voluntarily removed herself from the Nursing and Midwifery Council register.

Judith Brierley joined the NMC register in November 1990, and on June 17, 2019, she started working at Addison Court Care Home in Accrington as a registered nurse.

At the end of September 2019, the home's Quality Improvement Lead carried out a routine review of a resident's care records and discovered on a number of occasions Ms Brierley had signed to say that she’d witnessed the resident self-administer insulin into their arm.

The resident's 'assessment of risk’ form said they should be reminded to refrain from administering insulin into their arms, due to a pre-existing condition that could affect the way their body absorbed insulin, and increased the risk of hyperglycaemia or hypoglycaemia.

Other than making a record of the injection site, Ms Brierley didn’t take any other action and when this issue was later discussed, she told the Quality Improvement Lead that she’d not read the resident’s care plan.

Later, on September 26, 2019, Ms Brierley reported she’d given the resident the wrong dose of insulin on two occasions.

Luckily, the resident didn’t suffer any harm but on October 7, 2019, the care home made a referral to raise concerns about Ms Brierley’s fitness to practise and referred the concerns to the Fitness to Practise Committee.

There she was faced the charges of poor medication management in that she: did not read the resident's care plan prior to administering medication; administered, or witnessed self-administration of insulin via the incorrect route; administered the wrong dose of insulin to the resident on one or more occasion.

Ms Brierley admitted the errors and apologised, and engaged with the fitness to practise process and provided an early written response to the concerns dated October 28, 2019.

Following this, on March 6, 2022, Ms Brierley completed an application for voluntary removal from the NMC register.

A report from the Nursing and Midwifery Council read: "Ms Brierley said she’d read the resident's plan briefly but hadn’t sat down to read and absorb the plan properly because of time constraints and working 12-13 hour shifts, often without a break.

"Ms Brierley said she knew the resident's insulin shouldn’t be administered into their arms because of the pre-existing condition.

"She said she had no control over where the resident administered it once the insulin pen was in their hand but accepted this created a risk that she should have acted on.

"Ms Brierley also accepted she’d loaded the resident's insulin pen with the wrong dose of insulin on two occasions."

The NMC said that when the concerns were considered, the case examiners said Ms Brierley displayed good insight, and commented she hadn’t sought to minimise her role in what happened, had expressed remorse and identified how she might act differently in the future.

The report went on: "However, in the absence of any evidence that she’s taken steps to address the concerns or of current safe practice, they decided there’s an ongoing risk to the health, safety and wellbeing of the public.

"While the concerns in this case are the type of concerns that could result in harm to patients if not put right, they don’t involve the type of conduct that can’t be addressed and aren’t fundamentally incompatible with continued registration.

"There are clear and easily identifiable steps that could be taken to address the concerns if Ms Brierley didn’t want to stop practising.

"Having considered the seriousness of the concerns, I’m satisfied the public interest doesn’t require them to be considered in full by the Fitness to Practise Committee."

Ms Brierley’s application for voluntary removal contained a signed declaration that she won’t apply for re-admission to the NMC register for a period of at least five years, having last practised as a registered nurse on September 29, 2019.

The report concluded: "I’ve decided to grant Ms Brierley’s application for voluntary removal from the NMC register.

"I’m satisfied that she accepts the concerns and that allowing her to leave the register quickly, without the need for a full fitness to practise hearing, is the best way to meet the public interest in this case."

The NMC wrote to the Addison Court Care Home on April 13, 2022, to invite them to comment on Ms Brierley’s voluntary removal application but didn’t receive a response.