The General Medical Council (GMC)
Investigation into Dr Gladys Ikonnaya Ngozi Johnson-Ogbuneke reached its peak at the MPTS Fitness to Practise hearing on 16 April 2015, and the findings have now been made available to the public. The MPTS Panel agreed with the GMC that Dr Johnson-Ogbuneke’s fitness to practise was impaired by reason of her misconduct and have erased her from the GMC Register. This means that she is no longer able to practise as a doctor.
The GMC investigated conduct from 2010 and 2011 regarding a number of serious clinical errors which highlighted serious deficiencies in Dr Johnson-Ogbuneke’s clinical capability in a range of surgical procedures. The evidence included 20 witness statements from medical professionals in a variety of disciplines; most of whom had worked with Dr Johnson-Ogbuneke.
South London Healthcare NHS Trust (SLHNT)
Dr Johnson-Ogbuneke started workingas a Locum doctor with SLHNT in October 2010 and later secured a fixed term post as a Locum Middle Grade Registrar from 22 December 2010 to 31 March 2011. Amongst other failings, Dr Johnson-Ogbuneke botched at least four operations during her 3 month employment, and a Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon at SLHNT refused to allow her to operate on his patients.
On 7 October 2010 Dr Johnson-Ogbuneke used an inappropriate technique when performing a hip operation on Patient A causing unnecessary damage to them. Dr Johnson-Ogbuneke was unable to remove the fractured hip and had made an incorrect incision which damaged the surrounding tissue.
- On 9 March 2011 Dr Johnson-Ogbuneke carried out an operation to insert a screw into Patient C’s hip.
- X-rays later showed that the screw had been inserted too far into the hip joint and had gone into the patient’s pelvis rather than just across the fracture.
- Patient C required further surgery to correct this.
- An expert report produced for the hearing revealed that ‘…the operation was done to a seriously inadequate standard in that the hip screw was in the wrong place and was damaging the hip joint… to perform the operation this way fell seriously below the standard of a reasonably competent middle grade doctor’.
On 31 March 2011 Dr Johnson-Ogbuneke undertook a hip replacement operation on Patient D and due to her ‘poor operative technique’ made a hole in the patient’s femur. On the same day Dr Johnson-Ogbuneke also carried out an ankle fracture fixation on Patient E which is described as a ‘spectacular failure and goes against all principles of ankle fixation’. Patient E had to have revision surgery to correct the positioning of the screws which had led to cartilage damage and a significant risk of them developing arthritis. This was described as a ‘frightening example of orthopaedic surgery’.
University Hospital of North Staffordshire NHS Trust (UHNSNT)
In April 2011, Dr Johnson-Ogbuneke started employment as a Locum Registrar in Trauma and Orthopaedics at the UHNSNT and worked there until August 2011, when her application to re-apply for her position was unsuccessful. UHNSNT were informed by staff at South London Healthcare of concerns about Dr Johnson-Ogbuneke’s surgical ability and she was required to be supervised during all operations from May 2011.
Despite being supervised during this time, Dr Johnson-Ogbuneke failed to diagnose an ulnar nerve injury which was later discovered and required immediate surgery. The delay resulted in the nerve being trapped in the patient’s joint. She also failed to put a patient on the urgent spinal surgery list when this was required.
As an interim measure, the GMC had put conditions on Dr Johnson-Ogbuneke’s registration whilst it conducted a full investigation. During this time Dr Johnson-Ogbuneke worked for the Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust in Birmingham, until 2014.
Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service Hearing
Following the MPTS hearing in April 2015 the Panel concluded that Dr Johnson-Ogbuneke’s misconduct and dishonest behaviour indicated that she was ‘fundamentally incapable of working as a doctor’ and that ‘…erasure is the only proportionate sanction in order to protect patients and the public interest, to uphold public confidence in the profession and to maintain the reputation of the profession’.
Medical Negligence Claims
- Injuries relating to orthopaedic are sadly relatively common.
- Misdiagnosed or incorrectly treated orthopaedic injuries can be devastating and result in serious and life-changing disabilities including amputations. Even minor fractures can have lasting consequences if not appropriately treated.
- At Bolt Burdon Kemp, we have many years of experience of helping people with orthopaedic injuries to obtain compensation and we understand the impact these injuries can have. Find out more on medical negligence claims.