Yorkshire mental health nurse who made racist comments at work is struck off

A nurse who lives in York has been struck off after she made racist comments to colleagues.

Melanie Haye was originally suspended for six months by the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) but the High Court ordered she be struck off

Melanie Hayes admitted that she had made the offensive comments while working for Derbyshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust and Nottinghamshire NHS Foundation Trust.

The mental health nurse was originally suspended for six months by the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) but the High Court ordered she be struck off after the Professional Standards Authority (PSA) lodged an appeal.

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Andrea Sutcliffe, chief executive of the NMC, said the initial decision "wasn't the right one" and the organisation is "absolutely committed to learning from this".

An NMC report states Ms Hayes made racist comments to a colleague in the nurses’ office in Nottinghamshire in 2012.

It also says that when she was working in Derbyshire in May 2018, she said: “Hopefully the new job will be better than this one as I will be working with a team of white people”.

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When she was asked to clarify her comments in the nurse's office, she replied: “You got a f****** African who cannot manage a team and a fucking p*** who cannot make clinical decisions.”

A three-person panel found that her actions amounted to misconduct but “the allegations are not so serious as to warrant permanent removal from the profession”.

Ms Sutcliffe said: “I’m very sorry that our original decision wasn’t the right one, and I know how much concern that caused.

“I hope people feel reassured that by recognising this and referring our decision to the PSA, we’ve now reached an appropriate outcome, with the High Court deciding that Ms Hayes should be removed from our register.

“We’re absolutely committed to learning from this and making sure that we have suitable guidance and training in place to enable us and our independent fitness to practise panels to make the right decisions in cases concerning racism or any other form of discrimination.”