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OT struck off after accessing medical records of colleagues

HCPC strikes OT off after he accessed confidential records of several colleagues and made inappropriate comments to a colleague

Published on 20th April 2018

An occupational therapists has been struck off the HCPC register after he accessed the confidential medical records of his colleagues.

Foysol Baree was working as an occupational therapist at the Sutton and Merton Mental Health Learning Disability Team which is a part of South West London and St George’s Mental Health NHS Trust when he viewed the confidential records of three colleagues via the RIO record system and informed colleagues of what he had found in the medical records of one colleague.

In addition, Mr Baree made inappropriate and offensive comments to Colleague A including ‘you are a fat b*****d, you are 42 and still live with your mum’ or words to that effect.

It was alleged that Mr Baree had attempted to search the confidential medical RIO records of Colleague Y on several  occasions on or around 5 February 2016. The HCPC Panel saw a report from Information Governance and noted that the records showed Mr Baree had made 24 attempts to access Colleague Y’s records. Mr Baree’s Information Governance training was up to date at the time of the allegations and he told the Panel that he had been aware that it was wrong to access the confidential records of colleagues. He accepted that he had acted as alleged.

It was also claimed that around 8 April 2016, he accessed and viewed the confidential medical RIO records of Colleague A on two separate occasions. The Panel saw a report from Information Governance which indicated that Mr Baree had accessed Colleague A’s records on two occasions on 8 April 2016.

Mr Baree told the Panel that he initially accessed Colleague A’s records accidentally. He said when he realised it was Colleague A’s record he kept reading out of curiosity and it was that curiosity which led him to access Colleague A’s records a second time. He admitted that he had acted as alleged.

Furthermore, Mr Baree faced allegations that between approximately 8 April 2016 and 15 April 2016, he shared confidential and personal information about Colleague A with Colleague X and/or Colleague Y.

In her written statement for the HCPC proceedings, Colleague X stated: “He told me that he had accessed Colleague A’s records, as well as telling me details of what he had read.”

Mr Baree accepted that he had acted as alleged.

On or around 20 May 2015, Mr Baree then went on to access and view the confidential medical RIO records of Colleague X. In her written statement for these proceedings, Colleague X stated: “Foysol Baree told me that he had accessed both my and Colleague A’s medical records” and that he told her “I’ve looked you all up.”

The HCPC had regard to a report from Information Governance which indicated that Mr Baree had accessed Colleague X’s records on a single occasion on 20 May 2015. During his Investigatory Interview on 2 August 2016 Mr Baree said he did not recall accessing Colleague X’s records. However, in his evidence to the Panel, he accepted that he had acted as alleged.

The final allegation was that Mr Baree had made inappropriate and/or offensive comments to and/or about Colleague A, including ‘you are a fat bastard, you are 42 and still live with your mum’, or words to that effect between April and June 2016.

In his written statement for the HCPC proceedings Colleague A wrote: “Foysol Baree did say to me that I was ‘a fat bastard’ and that I was 42 and still lived with my mum…I did speak with Colleague X…in relation to the comments…”

Mr Baree denied that he had spoken to Colleague A as alleged. However, he also told the Panel that “there was inappropriate banter between us. He would call me dark I would call him fat. It was just banter.” On the occasion in question, Mr Baree said he had been upset by comments Colleague A had made to him and had responded to these by asking “How would you like it if I called you a fat bastard and said you are in your forties and live with your mum and haven’t got a partner?”

The Panel considered that Mr Baree’s actions compromised the confidentiality of the RIO record system and breached the individual confidentiality of those colleagues whose records he accessed. The seriousness of his actions was compounded by its duration, the number of records involved, his persistence in seeking to access colleagues’ records, and also by his disclosure to colleagues of what he had learned from the records of Colleague A. Further, his inappropriate and offensive comments in relation to Colleague A had no place in a professional workplace under any circumstances.

Panel Chair Peter Vines said: “Informed members of the public would be shocked to learn that Mr Baree had repeatedly accessed confidential records without legitimate professional reason, and had then shared highly sensitive medical information about one colleague with other colleagues.”

 The Panel ordered for the name of Foysol Baree to be struck off the HCPC Register.

Mr Baree was present at the hearing and represented by Mr Suresh Desai.

 

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