Crime

Paramedic tried to ‘attract users to jewellery business’ with photos of patients

An Essex based paramedic has been struck off for posting photos of patients to Instagram in a bid to boost his jewellery business.

Simon Williams, from Clacton, posted 24 pictures to Instagram which identified his patients and their conditions, reports Colchester Gazette.

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His online jewellery business had been struggling and he hoped the posts would attract more people to the website.

Photos were posted in 2014 and 2015 and a member of public alerted ambulance service bosses of the inappropriate comments and graphic pictures.

Photos shared included one with blood on the floor which he said was due to a stabbing. He later admitted this was false to make the photo more dramatic and attract interest in his jewellery company.

There were also photos of car and lorry collisions with comments saying, ‘got to laugh sometimes’ and ‘no one dead on this one.’

The Health and Care Professionals Council (HCPC) tribunal panel said Williams had “created enduring and repeated images of patients and events of a deeply unpleasant and offensive nature.

“In addition, the misguided and unintelligent comments made by him combine to create a picture of this registrant as a highly unprofessional and naïve individual.

“He had covertly taken offensive and graphic photographs of, and relating to, patients/service users and their private and confidential details and posted them on a public social media platform, often with highly inappropriate comments, also without their consent.

“The misfortune and ill health of the service users was there for all to see, read, and, if so inclined, to ridicule.”

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