On 16 May 2022 by audio visual link the Health Practitioner’s Disciplinary Tribunal heard two conviction charges laid by the Professional Conduct Committee appointed by the Medical Sciences Council against Ms E a registered anaesthetic technologist (the anaesthetic technologist).
The charge alleged that the anaesthetic technologist was:
- On 6 October 2016, convicted of a drink driving offence that occurred on 22 September 2016, an offence against section 56(2) of the Land Transport Act 1998
- On 30 November 2020, convicted of refusing to permit a blood specimen to be taken after being required to do so on 21 February 2020, an offence against section 72 of the Land Transport Act 1998 and an offence of careless driving on 21 February 2020 contravening section 60(1)(a) of the Land Transport Act 1998.
The two convictions 1 and 2, either separately or cumulatively reflect adversely on the anaesthetic technologist’s fitness to practise (s100(1)(c) of the HPCA Act 2023.
- On or about 9 March 2017, falsely declared on her application for annual practising certificate that she did not have any convictions against her name in the previous 12 months when she knew she had been convicted of a drink driving offence on 6 October 2016.
- On or about 19 March 2021, falsely declared on her application for annual practising certificate that she did not have any convictions against her name in the previous 12 months when she knew she had been convicted of refusing to give a blood specimen and for careless driving.
- Failed to notify the Medical Sciences Council that she had been involved in offending for which she had been convicted on 6 October 2016 and/or 30 November 2020 including the offending particularised in Charge 1:
- knowing that the Council had sought information from her when considering her applications for an annual practising certificate in 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020 and 2021 to satisfy itself that she was a fit and proper person to be registered and hold an annual practising certificate.
- knowing that this was information her registration body could reasonably expect to receive from her.
The conduct amounts to professional misconduct s100(1)(a) and s100(1)(b) of the Act either separately or cumulatively.
The anaesthetic technologist admitted the charge and the hearing proceeded by way of an Agreed Summary of Facts.
Prior to being registered as an anaesthetic technologist and prior to the offences set out in the charges, the anaesthetic technologist had been convicted in July 2002 of an offence against section 29 of the Summary Offences Act 1981. She was fined $600.
In September 2011 she was convicted of a drink driving offence (section 56(2) of the Land Transport Act 1998). She was disqualified from driving for seven months and fined $825.
In April 2013 the anaesthetic technologist completed her application for registration with the Medical Sciences Council. Attached to this application was a letter advising of her drink driving conviction. A further letter was sent to the Council shortly after addressing her past criminal convictions and expressed remorse for her offending.
The anaesthetic technologist’s application for registration was approved.
The anaesthetic technologist’s applications for practising certificates for the years 1 April 2014 to March 2015, 1 April 2015 to 30 March 2016 and 1 April 2016 to 31 March 2017 were truthfully completed.
The anaesthetic technologist also completed truthful applications on 23 March 2018 for the period 1 April 2018 to 31 March 2019 and 29 March 2019 for the period 1 April 2019 to 31 March 2020. These two applications fell between the convictions in 2016 and 2020.
In March 2017 and March 2021 however, the anaesthetic technologist falsely completed applications for practising certificates, failing to indicate on these applications, her convictions in the previous 12 months.
Charge One, particulars 1 and 2 established. The Tribunal was satisfied that the convictions and the offence bring discredit on the practitioner’s profession and reflects adversely on the practitioner’s fitness to practise.
Charge Two. Particulars 1, 2 and 3 established. The Tribunal was satisfied the particulars when consider both separately and cumulatively, related to dishonest conduct amounting to professional misconduct warranting disciplinary sanction.
The Tribunal ordered:
- Conditions on practice for a period of two years
- 15% of the costs amounting to $5,369.92
The Tribunal directed publication of the decision and a summary.