Stroke patient died at Northwick Park Hospital after nurse blunder, tribunal hears

The patient died at Northwick Park Hospital

The patient died at Northwick Park Hospital - Credit: Archant

A nurse at Northwick Park Hospital contributed to a stroke patient’s death by injecting drugs rather than administering them nasally, a tribunal heard today

Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) were told Chumitrah Vijendra, was caring for the 84-year-old at the hospital in Watford Road, Sudbury, when she made the astonishing blunder.

The patient was awaiting a procedure to fit a feeding tube which bypasses the mouth and oesophagus, and had a number of health conditions including high blood pressure.

After intravenously administering the man’s prescribed vitamins Vijendra proceeded to give him medication to treat his high blood pressure – which should be crushed and fed through a nasogastric tube.

But Vijendra used another intravenous syringe to administer the crushed pills.

The man became unresponsive and despite the arrival of a crash team he died at around 8.30am in February 2011.

Corinne Bramwell, for the NMC, said: “Having administered the vitamins intravenously as required to do so, it was also necessary for Patient A to be given oral drugs as prescribed.

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“Prior to administering these drugs the registrant discussed the process with the ward manager, in particular as the patient was nil by mouth due the PEG procedure he was due to be undertaking.”

But Vijendra used the wrong syringe and pumped the drugs into the man’s body rather than up his nose.

Vijendra, who had completed specific training for that procedure, was working on the hospital’s Herrick Ward on a 12-hour shift starting at 7.30am and finishing at 8.00pm.

She admits incorrectly administering the medication in an error which caused or contributed to the death of the patient.

The panel therefore found them proved by way of her admission and will now decide if her fitness to practise is impaired by reason of her misconduct.

The hearing continues.