An Indian radiographer has been sacked from his job at a cancer hospital after six years following a string of complaints that he could not speak clear English. Ramani Ramaswany was dismissed from The Christie hospital, in Manchester, and suspended from the national radiography register for a year after complaints were made against him that he was unable to communicate effectively with patients and colleagues.
Sacked: Indian registrar Ramani Ramaswany was dismissed from The Christie cancer hospital in Manchester after complaints that he could not speak clear English
The Health and Care Professions Council found that Mr Ramaswamy had showed a ‘lack of competence’ in a number of areas while working at The Christie. The panel heard that patients and staff had difficulty understanding him, with his command of English said to be getting worse by managers at the hospital despite extra English lessons after taking a job there. He was also slammed for failing to demonstrate competent handling of equipment and setting up a bed so badly that a supervisor had to step in to stop a patient getting injured.
Mr Ramaswarmy had asked a patient to confirm their name four times before a colleague was forced to intervene because neither the patient nor the member of staff could understand what he was saying. The radiographer, who lives in Moss Side, also failed to consistently ask patients to empty their bladders before procedures were carried out. A senior colleague described his practice as being ‘a bit of a hit or a miss’ and he often read out numbers incorrectly.
The committee heard that Mr Ramaswamy was recruited from India as an experienced radiographer and started work in August 2005. Because of concerns over his communication skills, he was at first restricted to a role where he had no contact with patients. He was moved on to the treatment floor in September 2009 for a three-month trial but this proved unsuccessful.
Cancer Hospital: The Christie in Manchester where Dr Ramaswany worked
He was then closely-monitored and an improvement plan was put in place. In June last year, his performance was rated as ‘unacceptable’ in every area. He was suspended and dismissed after a hearing in August last year and he has now been struck off for a year. The panel’s report said: 'On one occasion, a patient had become distressed. 'His communication skills, even after six years at the trust, were poor and he was recorded as keeping his communication with patients to a minimum and to be difficult to understand. The deficiencies identified by the panel have the potential to cause serious harm to patients.' Mr Ramaswamy said that the sanctions were unfair and the allegations had been ‘cooked up’.
He said he had now retired and was not looking for work, adding: 'It’s totally ridiculous. I previously worked in Malaysia and I was very well respected. 'The Christie said there were communication problems but I speak good English. I may be a little reserved.' When asked about failing to ask patients to empty their bladders before starting treatment he said: 'Maybe I missed it for one patient. I’ve never done any harm to the patients.; A spokesman for The Christie said that no treatments were affected and no patients were put at risk by Mr Ramaswamy. He added: 'He spent the vast majority of his time in treatment planning which involves no contact with patients. We are satisfied that our systems and processes have enabled us to identify this problem and deal with it appropriately.'
Source: Daily Mail UK