Northampton doctor who claimed 'graphic sexual emails' to junior nurse were 'marriage proposals' is struck off

The board noted the doctor showed "no insight" into why it was wrong - and even tried to pass it off as a "marriage proposal".

Tuesday, 4th February 2020, 6:00 am
Updated Tuesday, 4th February 2020, 9:00 am
Dr Simon Richard sent graphic sexual messages to a junior nurse. He later called how she didn't just block his messages "misleading".

A Northampton doctor who sent graphic sexual messages to a junior nurse's private email address has been struck off from ever practising again.

Dr Simon Richard, an anaesthetist at Northampton General Hospital, has had his name removed from the medical register for sending the string of "disturbing" emails he sent to a junior staff member.

But where Richard could have apologised and acknowledged what he did was wrong, he instead reportedly tried to pass off the emails as "a marriage proposal".

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He even sought to shift responsibility onto the nurse by saying how the way she didn't just block his messages was "misleading".

At his tribunal hearing on January 29, a panel heard how in 2017 the then-doctor asked his junior colleague for her personal email address to send her an article.

Instead, he began emailing the woman graphic sexual messages.

Even when the nurse told the hospital and Richard was ordered to stop, he carried on sending the emails, which led to the police getting involved and issuing him a caution.

It led to Richard being brought before the tribunal by the GMC [General Medical Council] in January 2019 to decide if he was fit to practice.

The panel even heard how in the run up to the tribunal, Richard emailed the GMC to try and minimise what had happened, and wrote: "I was wondering if you would be kindly deciding to close the investigation now itself with an advice to abide by the CAUTION [sic] instruction to keep good conduct in the future.

"You know it is as trivial as emailing; nothing face to face."

He also later claimed the emails were a marriage proposal.

In a report published last week, the panel ruled: "Dr Richard has not acknowledged his actions were inappropriate.

"Dr Richard [has] given no consideration to the impact his actions have had upon [the nurse] and that he has sought to shift responsibility of his actions onto her, as opposed to taking responsibility for them himself.

"Dr Richard has attempted to project the blame for his actions onto the hospital and also onto [the nurse] with comments in his emails to the GMC such as her ‘misleading nature of keeping quiet and not communicating to STOP or BLOCKING my email’.

The Tribunal ruled Richard’s conduct was sexually motivated and scolded him for repeatedly stating the incidents were "a misunderstanding".

His name was erased from the medical register with immediate effect.