Ebbw Vale ex-nurse struck off after physically abusing and swearing at Abergavenny residents

Free Press Series: STRUCK OFF: Howard Griffiths STRUCK OFF: Howard Griffiths

A FORMER senior nurse who swore at and physically abused dementia residents at a Gwent care home, has been struck off the nursing register.

Howard Griffiths, 55, "grossly abused his position of trust" at the Rozelle Nursing Home in Abergavenny over a number of years, a Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) hearing concluded.

A three-day NMC conduct and competence committee hearing was told that Griffiths, of Wordsworth Close, Ebbw Vale, abused patients during early 2007-August 2009. Nine allegations were found proven involving eight residents, including that he:

  • Spat in a resident's face;
  • Pulled a resident's hair;
  • Pushed one resident into an armchair and another into her bedroom and onto her bed;
  • Pulled a resident by her skirt with such force she was momentarily lifted off the ground;
  • Called a resident a "slut";
  • Began to undress a resident to change an incontinence pad in the home's lounge, in front of other residents and carers;
  • Swore and shouted at several residents.

Griffiths did not attend the hearing, and the panel concluded he had voluntarily absented himself.

The three-man NMC panel, sitting in Cardiff, found Griffiths' actions amounted to misconduct and his fitness to practise was impaired.

Its report setting out reasons for striking him off, concluded that those actions were "significant departures from the standards expected of a registered nurse, and are fundamentally incompatible with him remaining on the register.

"Nothing short of striking off would be sufficient in this case. Mr Griffiths' actions did cause harm to patients over a number of years. He grossly abused his position of trust," it concluded.

"The panel considered that this (striking off) order was necessary to protect patients, maintain public confidence in the profession and the regulatory process, and to send to the public and the profession a clear message about the standard of behaviour expected of a registered nurse."

Workers were intimidated by ‘aggressive’ manager CARE assistants told the hearing of being intimidated by Griffiths, who was night manager at the home.

Some admitted they did not mention incidents to management, or did not make formal complaints, because Griffiths was in a position of authority, because he could make their working lives difficult, and because they were afraid they would not be believed.

One, Nicola Thomas, said she had "walked out" after raising concerns over an incident where Griffiths "aggressively pushed" a resident down into an armchair, only to have the then owner believe his version of events over hers.

The panel was also informed of Griffiths' criminal conviction - at Cardiff Crown Court in July 2010 - on two counts of ill treating a person without capacity, contrary to section 44 of the Mental Capacity Act 2005, for which he was sentenced to a 12-month community order and 50 hours unpaid work in the community.

Comments (7)

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11:00pm Fri 22 Mar 13

ncfcr says...

Just a pity that one of the residents younger, male relatives never caught wind of this, and pushed him onto a chair and spat in his face.

SCUMBAG!

I hope he gets what's coming to him.
Just a pity that one of the residents younger, male relatives never caught wind of this, and pushed him onto a chair and spat in his face. SCUMBAG! I hope he gets what's coming to him. ncfcr
  • Score: -1

12:30am Sat 23 Mar 13

Doberman1 says...

Such a big hard man, particularly when dealing with vulnerable members of society. Would love to meet him one day.
Such a big hard man, particularly when dealing with vulnerable members of society. Would love to meet him one day. Doberman1
  • Score: 0

9:35am Sat 23 Mar 13

ABCDE123 says...

What a horrifying story, good on the NMC for striking him off!

Its people like this that are giving the nursing profession the bad name that it currently has.
What a horrifying story, good on the NMC for striking him off! Its people like this that are giving the nursing profession the bad name that it currently has. ABCDE123
  • Score: 0

12:08pm Sat 23 Mar 13

Llanmartinangel says...

The real scandal here is that he wasn't jailed. One wonders what you have to do to get sent down these days. Abusing vulnerable people should carry a minimum custodial sentence. No exceptions. Ever.
The real scandal here is that he wasn't jailed. One wonders what you have to do to get sent down these days. Abusing vulnerable people should carry a minimum custodial sentence. No exceptions. Ever. Llanmartinangel
  • Score: 0

1:51pm Sat 23 Mar 13

sugar2002ukuk says...

Llanmartinangel wrote:
The real scandal here is that he wasn't jailed. One wonders what you have to do to get sent down these days. Abusing vulnerable people should carry a minimum custodial sentence. No exceptions. Ever.
I agree scum like this need sending down to set an example. Blood boils reading this story the most vulnerable people in society. Im sorry but the people who didnt report it are just as bad. I just would not be able to live with myself knowing this man was abusing patients.
[quote][p][bold]Llanmartinangel[/bold] wrote: The real scandal here is that he wasn't jailed. One wonders what you have to do to get sent down these days. Abusing vulnerable people should carry a minimum custodial sentence. No exceptions. Ever.[/p][/quote]I agree scum like this need sending down to set an example. Blood boils reading this story the most vulnerable people in society. Im sorry but the people who didnt report it are just as bad. I just would not be able to live with myself knowing this man was abusing patients. sugar2002ukuk
  • Score: 0

2:31pm Sat 23 Mar 13

P C Neilson says...

None of my lot will ever go into a care home while I'm alive.
None of my lot will ever go into a care home while I'm alive. P C Neilson
  • Score: 0

4:51pm Sat 23 Mar 13

whitt6 says...

why was the court so soft on him when people get jailed (Hume) for taking speeding points for some one . the law is crazy !!
i believe this sort of thing happens in a lot of nursing home .
my mother fell after she tried to get out of bed. because she got fed up with waiting for the staff to answer the emergency bell she was ringing.
they had a habit of not answering , because they was sitting in the kitchen gossiping!
she hurt her self badly and .
later that days she died from a stroke which doctors said could not say for definate if the fall caused it!!
(sticking together springs to mind). thank god this place has now been closed .
i would rather die than go into one of these places to be abused and neglected by the likes of this ANIMAL.
i hope one day he will get what he deserves!!
why was the court so soft on him when people get jailed (Hume) for taking speeding points for some one . the law is crazy !! i believe this sort of thing happens in a lot of nursing home . my mother fell after she tried to get out of bed. because she got fed up with waiting for the staff to answer the emergency bell she was ringing. they had a habit of not answering , because they was sitting in the kitchen gossiping! she hurt her self badly and . later that days she died from a stroke which doctors said could not say for definate if the fall caused it!! (sticking together springs to mind). thank god this place has now been closed . i would rather die than go into one of these places to be abused and neglected by the likes of this ANIMAL. i hope one day he will get what he deserves!! whitt6
  • Score: 0

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