A nurse in Wales, United Kingdom, was dismissed from her job after it was discovered that she had engaged in an affair with a patient who tragically died during a sexual encounter with her. The nurse, identified as 42-year-old Penelope Williams, admitted to the affair, which had lasted over a year. The patient was found in the back of a car in the hospital parking lot, partially undressed, and unresponsive during his last moments. The nurse failed to call an ambulance when the patient collapsed during their intercourse, breaching professional ethics and neglecting her duties as a medical practitioner.
The patient, who was undergoing dialysis treatment for chronic kidney disease at the hospital, died from a cardiac arrest triggered by a medical episode. The incident prompted a thorough investigation and a trial before a panel of the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC). It was revealed that some of Williams’ colleagues were aware of her affair with the patient and had cautioned her about the potential consequences, which she ignored.
When emergency medical personnel arrived at the scene, they found the patient partially naked and unresponsive. The nurse not only violated the standards of her profession but also failed in her responsibilities as a healthcare provider by not calling an ambulance. Instead, she contacted a colleague after the patient’s collapse.
Initially, Williams misled the police by claiming that she had only gone to meet the patient after he messaged her on Facebook about his health condition. She stated that she visited him solely because he expressed feeling unwell. However, during her trial before the panel in February, she admitted to the sexual relationship and revealed that the patient had died suddenly while they were together. In May, during a subsequent hearing, she confessed to her involvement with the deceased, leading to her expulsion from her nursing duties. The hospital deemed that Williams’ actions had brought disrepute to the nursing profession.
The hospital board concluded that Williams had significantly deviated from the expected standards of a registered nurse and that her continued practice would undermine public confidence in the profession. Consequently, her removal from the nursing register was deemed necessary.