Nurse who stole from patient in coma blamed ‘African curse’
ABIRMINGHAM casualty nurse who stole a patient’s debit card as he lay in a coma claimed an African holiday “curse” was to blame.
Daniel Ncazana, a former A&E nurse at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, admitted stealing the patient’s debit card and using it eight times to buy items at Greggs, a BP garage and Sports Direct.
The 50-year-old pleaded guilty to two charges of theft and fraud at Birmingham Magistrates in August 2017, and was jailed for six months.
Now, he has been struck off the nursing register following a Nursing and Midwifery Council hearing.
The hearing heard how the victim, referred to as Patient A, was admitted to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital on November 6, 2016, after being found unconscious at the bottom of a flight of stairs at home.
The man remained in a coma at the hospital, but four weeks later his family discovered his bank card had been used while he was unconscious and they contacted the police.
The Post’s sister paper the Birmingham Mail published a CCTV picture of a man believed to be using the stolen card, and police were inundated with calls identifying Ncazana. He handed himself in after colleagues told him about the appeal.
But in a written response to the charges, thieving Ncazena tried to defend his behaviour, claiming his actions were due to a “curse whilst I was on holiday in October back in South Africa”.
Susan Hurds, chairman at the NMC hearing, said: “The panel had regard to Mr Ncazana’s reasoning that he has been one of the ‘pillars of the emergency department through the difficult times’ and that ‘even my line manager can testify for me…’
“However, there was no documentation that supported these claims.
“The panel determined that Mr Ncazana’s response to the charges lacked any kind of insight into his actions and failed to recognise the effect that they had on Patient A’s family or the nursing profession as a whole.
“Further, it determined that, despite being out of prison for some time, Mr Ncazana had not prepared a reflective piece relating to his actions, and was of the view that he only handed himself into the police when it was clear that he had very little other choice.”
The panel went on to say that any reasonable member of the public would be appalled by his actions, and that he had abused his position of trust to target a vulnerable patient for financial gain.
Ncazana was given a striking-off order and made subject of an 18-month interim suspension order to allow him to appeal against the decision.
A spokesman for University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust said: “The individual has not been employed by the Trust since April 2017. We fully support the decisions of both the court and the NMC.”
> Daniel Ncazana worked as an A&E nurse when he stole from a patient in a coma
> Queen Elizabeth Hospital where Ncazana worked