Nurse Jaclyn Stratton suspended after relationship with psych patient

A psychiatric nurse has been suspended after she fashioned a private and intimate relationship with a “extremely weak” affected person after which lied about it to authorities.

Jaclyn Stratton was working in regional Victoria, Australia when she started a six-month relationship with a affected person beneath her care.

The connection included common private contact, social actions, intensely private textual content messages utilizing false names, and intercourse, the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal was instructed.

Ms. Stratton instructed her supervisor her relationship with the affected person had turn out to be compromised, sparking an investigation.

However when interviewed, she lied concerning the nature of the connection, its size and extent of interactions she had with the affected person.

She stated it was a friendship that had ceased, but it surely was “clear the affected person was removed from accepting that the connection needed to stop”, the tribunal stated.

In her newest assertion to the Nursing Board, she stated when she tried to finish the connection, the affected person threatened suicide.

Ms. Stratton’s employer accepted her false statements and apology, and gave her a warning and an schooling paper to finish.

However she concerned the affected person in writing it, in what the tribunal deemed an “aggravating” issue.

Her employer solely discovered of the true nature of the connection when the affected person reported it.

“In brief, she lied concerning the nature, extent, and length of the connection, stopping (her employer) from taking urgently wanted motion to guard the welfare and finest pursuits of a extremely weak affected person,” the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal stated in its ruling on Thursday.

The nurse was aware of the vulnerability of the patient, who was diagnosed with borderline personality disorder.
The nurse was conscious of the vulnerability of the affected person, who was recognized with borderline character dysfunction.
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Ms. Stratton was conscious of the vulnerability of the affected person, who was recognized with borderline character dysfunction, continual suicidal ideation with self-harming behaviors.

After the Board was notified of the conduct, the nurse described feeling “trapped and terrified.”

She described her concern that the affected person would self-harm as the rationale she continued the connection and after she ceased it, she stated she continued cellphone contact as a result of “she was afraid of what would possibly occur”.

However the tribunal stated the actual fact she had these considerations made it much more essential that she disclose the true state of affairs to her employer.

“Full honesty was important and pressing. This should have been apparent to her,” the tribunal stated.

“By concealing the reality, Ms. Stratton put self-protection first and the wants of the affected person final.”

The tribunal rejected her clarification that her conduct came about as a result of she believed she was too empathetic and this made her unsuitable for psychological well being nursing.

Nevertheless it accepted she “deeply regrets” what occurred.

In her proof, she described her conduct as “horrible, totally atrocious conduct, that she thinks about each day, and may’t forgive herself for”.

The nurse, who now works as a midwife, was discovered to have engaged in skilled misconduct for breaching skilled boundaries and offering false and deceptive data.

She was suspended for 3 months and has coaching and monitoring circumstances positioned on her registration, to be reviewed in 12 months.

“The breaches evident listed below are critical issues for any nurse or well being skilled who cares for sufferers, and notably so the place the affected person could also be weak,” VCAT senior member Elisabeth Wentworth and well being practitioners Mary Archibald and Pamela Barry stated of their ruling.

“In psychological well being or psychiatric care, such breaches are acknowledged to have the potential to do higher hurt.

“That hurt was realized on this case.”

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