Dental nurse erased for falsifying CPD certificates
A dental nurse has been struck off for falsifying CPD certificates after being notified that she had not completed the required hours.
The Professional Conduct Committee concluded that the dental nurse’s behaviour was ‘so egregious’ that it was ‘fundamentally incompatible with being a dental professional’.
The committee heard that, on 20 September 2021, the dental nurse was notified in a letter from the GDC that she had not completed the required 10 verifiable CPD hours for the period spanning 2019 to 2021. She had completed three verifiable CPD hours for 2020 and three verifiable CPD hours for 2021.
The following day, witness 1 (the complainant) was shown the letter by the dental nurse who, during her lunch break, asked witness 1 if she could log in under her number and edit a CPD certificate on an online learning platform.
Witness 1 stated that she was shocked by the dental nurse’s suggestion. Witness 1 was sent Whatsapp messages later that evening by the dental nurse claiming that she had purchased an IT editing application.
One of these messages read: ‘Omg I’ve had to pay £9.99 for an app to edit all my certificates (laughing face emoji).’
Another read: ‘What I nightmare I will never do this again! I genuinely did not realise you had to do a minimum of 10 hours over two years (laughing face emoji x2)’ [sic].
She then submitted five falsified CPD certificates to the GDC on 10 October 2021. As a result, the committee found it proved that her actions were misleading, dishonest and lacked integrity.
The dental nurse, according to the hearing, acknowledged in her internal investigation meeting that she knew she was low on CPD hours and had made a mistake by submitting false CPD certificates to the GDC to make the hours up.
Mitigating factors included the dental nurse having no previous fitness to practise findings, partial admissions and an apology.
However, the committee detailed aggravating factors as dishonesty, premeditated misconduct and misconduct sustained or repeated over a period of time.
The committee concluded that the dental nurse should be erased from the register.
The report reads: ‘[The dental nurse] has shown limited insight into her behaviour, given that she has failed to detail the impact of her conduct on her colleagues and patients, and the fact that the public is entitled to expect that dental professionals have kept their knowledge and clinical skills up to date.
‘Her conduct was a serious departure from the standards expected of dental professionals.
‘Given these reasons, the committee concluded that [the dental nurse’s] behaviour was so egregious that it was fundamentally incompatible with being a dental professional.
‘In all the circumstances, the committee has determined to erase [the dental nurse’s name] from the dental care professionals register.’
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