A HUDDERSFIELD physiotherapist was accused at a disciplinary hearing in London of poaching the details of his bosses clients in order to set up his own business just half a mile away.
Brendan Aspinall, who used to work at Bridge House clinic admitted at the Health Professions Council (HPC) hearing accessing confidential patient information, contacting existing patients and advising them he was setting up his own business.
And the hearing was told that when his former boss confronted him and told him not to take patient data he had replied : “You don’t know what was on my memory stick or computer at home.”
The matter was reported to police but they said it was a civil matter.
Laura Ryan for the HPC, told the hearing : “He removed confidential patient information including telephone numbers and addresses and used it to write to and telephone them to inform them of his new place of work.”
Mr Aspinall worked at the BridgeHouse clinic from 2006 and March 2008 on a self employed basis but the hearing was told that he had left after a “number of incidents.” Information then came to light that he had been contacting patients.
Miss Ryan added : “He failed to respect patient confidentiality and behave with honesty and integrity.”
Suzannah Lewis, the owner of the BridgeHouse Clinic told the hearing that Mr Aspinall had joined them in 2006 after a recommendation by another physiotherapist.
“He was working full-time in the NHS and his role was to take on any extra patients to get established and any I couldn’t see or when I was on holiday.”
However, she said that when she went on holiday for two weeks which was to be followed by him taking holiday but there was “concern” at the lack of patients.
“Staff were concerned that things had slackened during this period and a meeting was arranged. He said if I wasn’t going to sell him the business, he would leave and guaranteed I would lose business,” she told the hearing.
“As soon as he left I received phone calls from patients. He and his wife Katie had been ringing patients up. I realised he’d taken patients details with him”.