A BARNSLEY Hospital nurse has been cautioned after stealing medication.

Staff nurse Beverley Jayne Roberts admitted taking prescription and controlled drugs and equipment over two and a half years.

She was sacked by the hospital after a disciplinary hearing in November 2011, but although the matter was reported to the police, the charge was withdrawn by the Crown Prosecution Service.

A Nursing and Midwifery Council panel found her fitness to practise was impaired by her misconduct and imposed a three-year caution order - although she is still allowed to nurse.

Roberts was discovered in September 2011 when her estranged husband called the trust saying she had trust medication and equipment at her home.

Roberts, who has had an otherwise unblemished career since qualifying as a nurse in 2007, had taken prescription and controlled drugs including fluconazole capsules, paracetamol, codeine phosphate, zopiclone, buscopan, doxycycline, furosemide, ondansetron, diclofenac and tramadol.

She had also taken an old blood pressure monitor and an electric heat pad.

She said she would often put the medication in her pockets as she cleared patients' lockers following their discharge from hospital.

She put them in a drawer at home and 'forgot' about them. When she noticed, she said she returned the medication and had no intention of using it.

Roberts claimed she had taken the heat pad after suffering from a stiff neck and and the blood pressure monitor after her husband complained of feeling faint.

She had planned to return it as soon as she had used it.

In her evidence, Roberts apologised and accepted her actions were 'completely inappropriate'.

Roberts said she had let her colleagues down and abused the position of trust in which she had been placed.

She said she would never behave in such a way again.

The panel accepted Roberts' assurances that she had learned from her experience and was unlikely to repeat her misconduct.

But it found she had breached a fundamental tenet of the profession, bringing it into disrepute and imposed the caution order which it felt would be sufficient to mark the seriousness of the misconduct.