RLI lab worker is struck off

Royal Lancaster Infirmary
Royal Lancaster Infirmary

A pathology lab worker who was sacked after she cancelled leave, then failed to show up for work, managed to secure a post at the Royal Lancaster Infirmary, a disciplinary tribunal heard.

A biomedical scientist, who knew Marie Fell had been dismissed from the joint pathology service for Wigan and Salford, was surprised to see her working for the microbiology department at the RLI.

Fell, who submitted a false reference to secure the Lancaster job, has now been struck off by the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) following a conduct and competence hearing.

The HCPC committee heard that Fell was also given a conditional discharge, for two offences of theft, by Wigan magistrates in April 2012.

Several witnesses, including the Wigan Infirmary staff member who spotted her in her later role, and managers from Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust, were called to give evidence.

Fell submitted a false reference to the Morecambe trust, in which she said she lost her job at Wigan due to “NHS cuts”. But staff at Wigan confirmed she had been dismissed for “fraudulent behaviour.”

Striking her off the medical registers, a HCPC spokesman said: “The registrant’s actions in engaging in repeated acts of dishonesty fell well short of what was proper in the circumstances.”

David Wilkinson, Director of Workforce and Organisational Development at University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust (UHMBT) said: “As part of our workforce processes, it came to light that Marie Fell had supplied details of false referees during the recruitment process.

“As a result, in November 2015, she was dismissed from the Trust and we referred the case to her professional regulator, the Health and Care Professions Council, to take action that they saw as appropriate.”