RN Chit Chit Than – Unsatisfactory professional conduct - Reprimand

24 April 2019

The Health Care Complaints Commission prosecuted a complaint against four registered nurses alleging unsatisfactory professional conduct and professional misconduct in relation to their conduct surrounding the suicide death of Ms Ahlia Raftery.  Ms Raftery was 18 years old at the time of her death and was a patient in the Psychiatric Intensive Care Unit (‘PICU’) at the Mater Mental Health Centre on 18/19 March 2015, having been admitted for her high suicide risk. RN Than was the Clinical Nurse Specialist allocated to Ahlia on the day shift.

The complaint alleged a failure to undertake appropriate observations in relation to all four nurses. 

On 19 March 2019 the Tribunal found RN Than guilty of unsatisfactory professional conduct.  The Tribunal found that despite the observation policy requiring a minimum sighting of Ms Raftery every 15 minutes, “an observation of a patient who is awake cannot occur in circumstances where the patient is only partially visible and their facial expression cannot be seen. A ‘sighting’ in such circumstances is not an observation because it does not provide the ability for the necessary clinical assessment to be made”.

On 24 April 2019 the Tribunal handed down its orders.  it formally reprimanded RN Than. 

Further Information

The Stage 1 decision is available at NSW Caselaw here.

The Stage 2 decision is available at NSW Caselaw here.

For further information, contact the Executive Officer of the Health Care Complaints Commission, on 9219 7444 or send an email to media@hccc.nsw.gov.au.

The information in this media release is correct at the time of publication. Orders may change; for example, conditions may no longer apply. For current information regarding the status of a registered health practitioner, including any conditions that currently apply, please check the National Register at www.ahpra.gov.au.