In the case of Fernandez v Allied Healthcare, Ms Fernandez raised concerns with the local health board regarding the safety of her patient. In a confidential email, she claimed the healthcare assistants allocated to provide care for her patient lacked the necessary skills and experience. Instead, she believed more qualified nursing staff should have been used to care for the patient.
The health board promptly forwarded this email to her employers who threatened her with disciplinary action. She received further warnings from her managers when she continued to voice her concerns before eventually being fired.
The tribunal described Ms Fernandez as a ‘dedicated’ and ‘hardworking’ member of staff whose sole concern and motive was the safety of her patient. It was ruled that she had been unfairly dismissed and she was awarded £80,000.
Following the judgement, a spokeswoman for Allied Healthcare said: “We have new systems to enable our colleagues to raise concerns of any kind, with new processes and protections that we believe are now the best in the sector.”