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Nurse who taped man's mouth shut is guilty of misconduct

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File photo of nurse Bimbo Paden

File photo of nurse Bimbo Paden

File photo of nurse Bimbo Paden

A NURSE, who looked a severely brain damaged patient in the eyes, as he told him he was going to put surgical tape over his mouth to stop his "involuntary" shouting, has been found guilty of professional misconduct.

Bimbo Paden insisted his actions were out of "sympathy" for a terminally ill cancer patient in the same ward, who had become extremely distressed by the man's "constant" noises which had lasted over an hour.

Patient A, a "heavy man" who weighed in excess of 100kg (15 stone), required full care for all his daily needs, including personal hygiene and eating, an inquiry was told.

He was not able to use his limbs or respond to commands, and his only form of verbal communication was through shouting, the inquiry was told.

Mr Paden, a father-of-three, had worked at St John's Community Hospital in Sligo since 2001, shortly after arriving in Ireland from the Philippines.

On the morning of June 26 last year, he approached Patient A in bed, who was resident there for 13 years having suffered a brain haemorrhage.

He gave him his breakfast which consisted of "thickened fluids" as he had difficulty swallowing.

Immediately after breakfast the patient started shouting.

Patient C, a terminally ill cancer sufferer with memory loss, became "restless" because of the noise in the ward.

"I was looking at him and he looked very agitated," Mr Paden said.

He then walked to Patient A's bed and tried to "calm him down" by rubbing his shoulder.

He also tried to "shush" him but to no avail.

Later that morning, Mr Paden decided to use a sling to hoist the patient out of bed and into a chair.

He then took white surgical tape out of his pocket and tore off a strip, before placing it over his mouth.

He recalled how he was looking directly at the patient, whose eyes were open, as he said: "I'll put this on". But the patient wasn't making eye contact and didn't react.

He insisted his actions were motivated out of "sympathy" for Patient C. Mr Paden was found guilty on two charges of professional misconduct.

The Fitness to Practice Committee will now submit its report and recommendations to a full meeting of the Nursing Board, which will decide on any sanction.

Irish Independent