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NHS nurses jailed after abusing elderly patients

JAILED: (From left) Sharmila Gunda, Akousa Sakiywaa, and Annette Jackson

A JUDGE has jailed three healthcare assistants who abused elderly patients in an east London hospital today.

Akousa Sakiywaa, 38, Sharmila Gunda, 36, and Annette Jackson, 33, were accused by a student nurse, acting as a whistleblower, of treating 11 elderly patients on Beech Ward at Whipps Cross University Hospital in Leytonstone in a way that "simply had no place on any ward."

The prosecutor handling John McNally told the juror that the three women should have taken good care of their patients even if they being obstructive at times.

He said: "Even when people lack capacity they don't just become bodies to be pushed around."

The poor treatment is said to have taken place between February 27 and April 30 in 2012.

Sakyiwaa, who is said to have held a bed sheet over 87-year-old Joan Massett's head and told her she was dead, was jailed or 12 months.

Fellow health workers Gunda, of Ilford, was given a five-month prison sentence and Annette Jackson of Hounslow given a two-month suspended sentence and order to complete 100 hours unpaid work.

Judge Timothy Lamb, who passed the sentences at Snaresbrook Crown, said the three health workers had “damaged patient trust” in the NHS.

“An entitlement to proper care should not be matter of chance or be given at the whim of the career. The conduct complained of simply had no place on any ward,” he told the jury.

Bart Health NHS Trust, which runs the hospital has now apologised to patients for the stress causes.

In a statement issued following the verdicts, the trust said: “We apologise unreservedly to the patients of Beech Ward and their families for the indefensible failing in their treatment during their time in our care.”

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