AN investigation has led to an East Lancashire nurse being suspended for ‘inappropriate behaviour’ towards patients and colleagues.

Yvonne Puckering was dismissed from East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust last August for gross misconduct after being found to have behaved ‘aggressively’ towards fellow staff and patients, the Nursing and Midwifery Council was told.

But the health watchdog stepped in when Puckering then applied to work at another unnamed hospital, the NMC’s investigation committee heard.

Matthew Turner, for the NMC, said Puckering’s behaviour had the potential to cause harm to patients and colleagues.

He urged the committee to impose an interim suspension order on the nurse, who was not present, ‘for public protection’.

Puckering, whose address has not been revealed, had also received a police caution in relation to a criminal damage offence, the committee was told.

The panel heard that Puckering was in hospital, at the time of the hearing, with an unspecified complaint, according to an e-mail from her partner, Samuel Hey.

Panel chairman Andrew Skelton said: “The panel acknowledges that Ms Puckering is unwell and is currently in hospital.

“The panel considered that the allegations in this matter are serious, and noted that concerns have been raised which relate to Ms Puckering’s inappropriate behaviour towards patients and colleagues.

“Concerns have also been raised regarding Ms Puckering’s behaviour outside work.

“The panel considered that the public interest outweighed that of Ms Puckering’s own interest in postponing this hearing for a period, which cannot be anticipated at the moment.

“Further, the panel considered that there was a public interest for a decision to be made whether Ms Puckering should be made the subject of an interim order at the earliestopportunity.”

The panel decided to impose an 18-month interim suspension, pending a full investigation into the nurse’s behaviour.