New South Wales man Scott McLennan has been convicted and fined $15,000 following charges laid by the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (Ahpra).
McLennan was found guilty of impersonating a nurse while working at a Western Australian cosmetic clinic, where he carried out procedures, including administering injectables, to clients between August and November 2018.
He was convicted of two counts of holding himself out as a nurse in breach of section 116 of the National Law.
The verdict was handed down following his failure to appear in court last week.
“We will take swift action against people who are pretending to be a nurse or pretending that they are registered under the National Law,” said Ahpra CEO Martin Fletcher, who insisted that harsh penalties were important in situation such as this, to ensure public safety. “Patients put their trust in properly qualified and registered practitioners, and it is a gross violation of that trust when someone falsely claims to be registered.”
The Cosmetic Physicians College of Australasia (CPCA) welcomed the verdict, highlighting the risks associated with procedures being carried out by unqualified practitioners. “Falsified qualifications are a real danger in medicine, especially cosmetic medicine,” Dr Michael Molton, President of the CPCA, said. “The College welcomes the crackdown on people who pose as being qualified cosmetic practitioners when they are not. More should be done to protect the excellent reputation of the Registered Nursing colleagues we work alongside.”
Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia Chair, Associate Professor Lynette Cusack, reiterated the importance of clinic owners to verify any employee’s qualifications. “In our role as regulators of the nursing profession, anyone who is claiming to be a nurse must be registered with the NMBA. Ask questions about the person and check the register of practitioners to see if the person delivering the care is listed.”
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