Friday 21 October 2016

GP found guilty of poor professional performance over care of cancer patient who later died

Liz Farsaci

Published 22/02/2016 | 13:06

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A GP appearing before a Medical Council inquiry over her care of a female patient who later died of advanced colon cancer was today found guilty of poor professional performance.

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A number of the allegations, however, faced by Dr. Intan Besri, of Dublin 13, were not proven beyond reasonable doubt.

Dr. Besri, a general practitioner working as a locum at the College Gate Clinic at Ballymun Road, Glasnevin, Dublin, faced a number of allegations in relation to Breeda Fayne, who was seen by the GP on two occasions between February and April 2012.

Mrs Fayne, who died of advanced colon cancer two years ago, in February 2014, made a complaint to the Medical Council in April 2013.

Today, the inquiry, which began November last, was informed that Dr. Besri was willing to admit to six of the factual allegations, and that these allegations constituted poor professional performance.

The factual allegations Dr. Besri admitted to were in relation to her failure to develop an appropriate management plan for Ms. Fayne, who came to visit her on 8 February 2012, and failure to make adequate notes regarding that visit, or a visit on 11 April 2012.

On foot of these admissions by Dr. Besri, the inquiry committee found that these six allegations were proven as to fact and that, collectively, they amounted to poor professional performance.

In announcing their findings, the committee members offered their condolences to Mrs. Fayne’s widower and son, who were present at the inquiry. The committee chairman said they were aware that, for both parties, this was a difficult process.

Sanctions will be determined at a later date.

Simon Mills, representing Dr. Besri, today requested that the sanctions imposed on Dr. Besri be at the lower end of the scale.

He pointed out that this was an isolated care involving a single patient and while there was ultimately a tragic outcome for Mrs. Fayne and her family, it was never alleged that any act or omission on the part of Dr. Besri lead to Mrs. Fayne’s death.

Since 2012, Dr. Besri, who obtained her medical degree from the University College Dublin in 2001, has taken a number of steps to develop herself professionally, and has implemented an improved note-taking system, Mr. Mills pointed out.

He added that, since the outset of the inquiry, Dr. Besri has admitted that her note-taking in relation to Mrs. Fayne’s visits were not adequate and, ‘having reflected with an open mind’ upon the evidence given by an expert witness to the inquiry in November, admits that she failed to create an adequate management plan for Mrs. Fayne during their visit on 8 February 2012.

The inquiry previously heard that, in her letter of complaint, dated April 2013, Mrs. Fayne said she went to visit Dr Besri in February 2012, complaining of pain on her left side. Dr Besri requested an abdominal MRI for Mrs Fayne but, instead, an MRI of the pelvis was performed, for reasons unknown to the inquiry.

In her letter, Mrs Fayne said her pain worsened throughout the year and, in November 2012, she visited another doctor. Some investigations were performed and, in December of that year, she was advised that she had advanced colon cancer.

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