A community psychiatric nurse who fell in love with a patient and later married him has been cautioned at a misconduct hearing.
Karen Brock, aged 44 and from Plymouth, was last week found to have failed to maintain appropriate professional boundaries in her relationship with ‘service user A’.
Ms Brock, who had a child with the man, told a Nursing and Widwifery Council panel she accepted she had “overstepped professional boundaries” but she fell in love and now has a loving and stable relationship with the man.
“Sometimes feelings are just very difficult to cast aside,” she said.
The hearing was reported in full by Plymouth’s Herald newspaper.
The charge relates to a period between December 2003 and October 2004 when Ms Brock was employed as a community psychiatric nurse by Plymouth Teaching Primary Care Trust, a panel in Plymouth heard.
Ms Brock said she only had a social relationship with the man towards the “very very end” of the time he was in her care.
Patrick Kelly, chairman of the hearing, said the panel had determined Ms Brock’s fitness to practice was impaired by reason of misconduct.
He said it amounted to a “breach of trust” between Ms Brock and “vulnerable service user A”.
Ms Brock, who now works privately and said she hopes to move into nurse education, was given a five-year caution order, The Herald reported. She will remain a registered nurse who is able to practice.