Ex-nurse used old uniform and ID card to get drugs
A former nurse donned her old uniform and ID card to trick hospital staff into giving her DRUGS, which she pretended were for patients.
Jayne Copley, 34, dressed up in her old nurse’s uniform and pretended to be on duty at Hull Royal Infirmary, so she could get her hands on strong painkiller Tramadol.
She brazenly walked into two hospital wards in order to get the narcotic-like drugs, which can be highly addictive.
Mum-of-one Copley tricked staff into giving her almost 70 packets of Tramadol, by explaining the drugs were for patients on another ward.
But she admitted two charges of fraud by false representation on the day she was due to stand trial at Hull Magistrates’ Court.
Prosecutor James Byatt said Copley, from Hull, East Yorks had breached the trust of the other nurses and there was an element of “pre-planning” when she went into Wards 4 and 40 to get the drugs on June 9, this year.
Mr Byatt said: “This lady used to be a nurse and she kept her nurse’s uniform and identification badge.
“She was going into Hull Royal Infirmary to one ward saying, ‘Can I have some Tramadol tablets’, claiming they were needed by staff for a patient in Ward 6.
“She wasn’t working at the hospital and the ward didn’t need the tablets – they were for her.
“She then went into another ward and did the same thing.”
Copley, who has a two-year-old daughter, had told staff she was employed by private health service Bupa but was working at Hull Royal Infirmary as a temporary bank nurse. Bank nurses are registered nurses who can provide cover to NHS hospitals.
Copley made off with almost 70 tablets of the narcotic-like painkiller, which is used to treat moderate to severe pain, and can be highly addictive.
A nurse became suspicious of Copley’s actions and informed management, who investigated and then called the police and Copley was arrested on the same day.
Copley originally denied the offences, claiming the staff who raised the alarm with police had mistaken her for someone else.
However, yesterday (WEDS) she pleaded guilty to both charges.
At an earlier hearing, Mr Byatt said: “I understand Ms Copley is a registered nurse but at the time of these alleged offences she was not working for the NHS or a private company.
“She suggested to various people she was working for Bupa and had signed up on that day as a bank nurse on Ward 6.
“She went into two wards – Ward 4 and 40 – and requested from members of staff there, Tramadol, the painkilling drug.
“It was alleged the drugs were needed by staff for a patient on Ward 6.
“There was not a huge quantity of the drug and the staff say it was being used as a controlled drug to relax the patients.”
In mitigation for Copley, Michael Miller described the case as “unusual” but asked for it to be adjourned for pre-sentence reports.
He said: “It is clearly unusual circumstances and they don’t fit neatly into the sentencing guidelines.
“She has no previous convictions and has a two-year-old daughter.
“Clearly there are issues as to the background of this.
“Obviously these drugs were for her own use. I ask for the preparation of a pre-sentence report.”
Russell Moore, the head of security at Hull and East Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust, praised staff for raising the alarm quickly.
He said: “Fraud committed against the NHS takes vital funds away from our hospitals and the patients we serve.
“In this case, members of hospital staff acted quickly to raise their concerns and we would like to praise them for their part in bringing this case to court.”
Copley will be sentenced on Thursday, December 11.
Chair of the bench Peter Robson told Copley: “We are going to seek reports to be prepared.
“These will assist us in the sentencing and it is in your interest to co-operate.”