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Anesthesiologist who admitted working for two hospitals at the same time retains his job with the NHS

An embarrassed intensive care doctor faced with a career demise after illegally posting extra money by secretly working in two hospitals at the same time was allowed to return to work after the NHS said it needed his help to help Covid Treat 19 patients.

54-year-old consultant anesthesiologist John Bleasdale was suspended for a year after falsely claiming public money for 33 shifts at Sandwell General Hospital in West Bromwich, while also on call at a nearby Priory clinic 12 kilometers away.

Over a 21-month period, Bleasdale, a clinical leader in intensive care, worked night shifts from 5:30 pm to 8:00 am in Sandwell, claiming another £ 20,000 by agreeing to stand by in private BMI hospital in Birmingham.

Dr. John Bleasdale, in the photo, was suspended for over a year while being investigated on allegations he falsely claimed for 33 shifts at an NHS hospital, while also working at a nearby private unit

Dr. John Bleasdale, in the photo, was suspended for over a year while being investigated on allegations he falsely claimed for 33 shifts at an NHS hospital, while also working at a nearby private unit

Dr. John Bleasdale worked at the pictured Sandwell General Hospital in West Bromwich, when he would have to be on duty at The Priory Hospital in Birmingham, 8 miles away

Dr. John Bleasdale worked at the pictured Sandwell General Hospital in West Bromwich, when he would have to be on duty at The Priory Hospital in Birmingham, 8 miles away

Dr. John Bleasdale worked at the pictured Sandwell General Hospital in West Bromwich, when he would have to be on duty at The Priory Hospital in Birmingham, 8 miles away

He was reported to the General Medical Council in April 2018 after his illegal work patterns were discovered by senior health officials.

In September last year, Bleasdale, who has since repaid the money, was found guilty of misconduct and was banned from treating patients for 12 months after a disciplinary panel said that his behavior had “obvious potential” to endanger patients.

But last week, his suspension broke down and he was deemed fit to start practicing medicine again after a senior doctor from Sandwell’s NHS trust and West Birmingham Hospital wrote the GMC without Bleasdale’s knowledge asking him to return to the front line to help tackle the pandemic.

The senior physician, known only as Dr. C, said he needed “every ICU consultant I can get, let alone clinically excellent colleagues like John Bleasdale.” Other medical colleagues had described Bleasdale as “extremely reliable, hardworking and clinically excellent.”

The GMC had initially requested that Bleasdale be removed from the medical registry.

The Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service was told Bleasdale who had worked at Sandwell since 2000 and the BMI Priory since 2002 received over £ 19,800 in payments for services he applied for between March 2016 and December 2017.

The Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service was told Bleasdale who had worked at Sandwell since 2000 and the BMI Priory since 2002 received over £ 19,800 in payments for services he applied for between March 2016 and December 2017.

The Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service was told Bleasdale who had worked at Sandwell since 2000 and the BMI Priory since 2002 received over £ 19,800 in payments for services he applied for between March 2016 and December 2017.

The Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service was told Bleasdale who had worked at Sandwell since 2000 and the BMI Priory since 2002 received over £ 19,800 in payments for services he applied for between March 2016 and December 2017.

The GMC accused him of “serious dishonesty” and said that Bleasdale “knowingly agreed” to work for the NHS while claiming £ 600 a day from the Priory for “concurrent services” without telling the Trust or colleagues. It said Bleasdale’s behavior resulted in “potential harm to patients” because it “undermined his ability to respond in one location or the other.”

The doctor himself said that on a typical day in the Priory he would start a ward round at 7.15am and then work at Sandwell Hospital between 8am and 6pm while making himself available for ‘support’ at the privately run clinic .

He said he would work in Sandwell from 5:30 PM to 9:00 PM on his call to the Trust and be on the phone until 8:00 AM the next morning while in the Priory.

He claimed that during a call to the Trust or Priory, he could physically go to a hospital within 30 minutes if necessary. He also said that patients admitted to the Priory’s intensive care unit needed “less critical or urgent treatment.” No patient suffered negatively from Bleasdale’s dishonesty.

Bleasdale also claimed £ 600 per service while working for Priory Hospital in Birmingham. He claimed that he could visit both locations within 30 minutes and that no patient was harmed by his dishonesty

Bleasdale also claimed £ 600 per service while working for Priory Hospital in Birmingham. He claimed that he could visit both locations within 30 minutes and that no patient was harmed by his dishonesty

Bleasdale also claimed £ 600 per service while working for Priory Hospital in Birmingham. He claimed that he could visit both locations within 30 minutes and that no patient was harmed by his dishonesty

In a statement, Bleasdale, who has since resigned from his on-call service in the Priory, said: “It has become very clear to me now that I should never have agreed to provide on-call services to the Trust and ICU simultaneously without first discussing with my employers.

“I agree that I had done wrong, but that was not my opinion at the time. If I had considered, and thus known, that my actions were fundamentally or contractually wrong, I would never have agreed to be available simultaneously.

He added: “Before I started in the hospital, I considered what I would do if I was called to the hospital and the Trust at the same time and if there could be any consequences for patient safety.

“But I thought about it based on feasibility – whether I thought it was feasible for me to cover both locations or not. I have always believed that this is feasible, provided it has sufficient coverage, but it was rejected for economic rather than clinical reasons because the Trust would not have actually saved.

“I did indeed believe that this belief that coverage at two locations was feasible and safe was influenced by a decision regarding hospital coverage during a call to the Trust.”

Dr. Bleasdale apologized for his behavior. He said: “There was a clear double payment for the on-call service and there were options to avoid the situation. I should have been more transparent and indicate any interests. I had not been honest in my financial transactions with the Trust and I created a potential for endangering patient safety. My colleagues clearly thought my behavior was wrong ‘

In a follow-up statement, he added, “I should have realized there were security risks, it was common sense.

“There was a clear double payment for the on-call service and there were options to avoid the situation. I should have been more transparent and indicate any interests. I had not been honest in my financial transactions with the Trust and I created a potential for endangering patient safety. My colleagues clearly thought my behavior was wrong. ‘

At the assessment session, Bleasdale’s lawyer, Mr Marios Lambis, submitted a file of testimony from hospital colleagues calling for his return to work.

Mr. Lambis said: “It is very unusual that this early assessment actually started without the knowledge of Dr. Bleasdale after Dr. C to the

GMC to insist that he be allowed to return to work in the face of the Covid-19 pandemic.

“These documents are extraordinary and show that Dr. Bleasdale took the 2019 Tribunal decision very seriously. He has worked tirelessly to allay his concerns and has acted openly and transparently.

His reflections are exemplary, profound and show humility and self-understanding. Never has protection, NHS resources and access to skilled personnel been so urgent for the public, and it is clearly not in the public interest to continue to rob the public of a good and competent doctor. ‘

In a testimony, a colleague known as Dr. F: “Dr. Bleasdale is an excellent doctor. He is a respected anesthetist at the Trust and many junior anesthetists look up to him. He has fulfilled many leadership roles within the Trust. He is hardworking and reliable and puts patient safety first. He has always been a reliable and reliable colleague. ‘

Another doctor Dr. I said, “He was not upset that people had expressed concern about the double calls, but rather that his actions might have affected patient safety.

He was angry that people would think he was greedy, or that he posted his private work for his NHS work. I have Dr. Bleasdale never found greedy or put his private work first. Dr. Bleasdale has always put his NHS commitments first and he is very committed. ‘

A third colleague, Dr. J, said, “Dr. Bleasdale told me he had been extremely stupid. The fact is that he is motivated by his desire to help people and he finds it very difficult to say ‘no’. ‘

When releasing Bleasdale to return to work, MPTS chairman Simon Bond said, “Dr. Bleasdale has now fully appreciated the seriousness of his dishonest behavior. He has been open and honest with his colleagues at the Trust about the 2019 Tribunal’s findings and the sanction imposed on him.

The Tribunal noted that, after a period of inactivity, Dr. Bleasdale had been re-employed by the Trust in two separate non-clinical positions, testifying to the esteem he is held in. The Tribunal took note of the significant number of testimonials for Dr. Bleasdale who testify to his clinical skills and the appreciation with which he is held by both junior and senior colleagues.

The balance is in favor of withdrawing Dr.’s suspension. Bleasdale, enabling him to return to work as an ICU consultant to tackle the current public health crisis. ”

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