latest health care news

14.03.17

Former NHS CEO convicted of £11,000 fraud, but avoids jail term

NHS England’s former national lead for equality, Paula Vasco-Knight, and her husband, Stephen, have been found guilty of fraud, but received suspended sentences at Exeter Crown Court.

While CEO of Torbay and South Devon NHS FT, Vasco-Knight admitted paying her husband’s graphic design business £11,000 for work on a publication which never existed. Notionally, he was being ‘paid’ to produce a document about leadership for NHS CEOs.

The couple pleaded guilty at the same court on 26 January, following a fraud investigation by NHS Protect. She has been given a 16-month prison sentence, suspended for two years, plus 250 hours of unpaid work. Her husband was sentenced to 10 months’ imprisonment, suspended for two years, plus 150 hours of unpaid work.

NHS Protect noted that after the couple found themselves under investigation, the Vasco-Knights tried to retrospectively manufacture a document to justify the payment of the invoice. Entitled ‘Transform’, they presented it in March 2015 at an interview under caution with investigators.

But investigators established that the document could not have been produced in November 2013 as stated, as it contained large passages of text copied straight from a bona fide King’s Fund document that wasn’t published until November 2014 – a year later.                                                                                                                      

Sue Frith, managing director of NHS Protect, said: “Paula and Stephen Vasco-Knight defrauded the NHS of money that is meant for the care of patients and which came from the public purse. The vast majority of those working in the NHS are people of the utmost integrity, who will feel extremely let down by these crimes.

“NHS Protect will continue to follow up on every suspicion of fraud reported to us. We will investigate and prosecute wherever appropriate so that offenders can be brought to justice.”

NHS Protect added that proceedings will commence to recover the funds lost to the NHS.

Have you got a story to tell? Would you like to become an NHE columnist? If so, click here.

Comments

There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment

 

national health executive tv

more videos >

featured articles

View all News

last word

Haseeb Ahmad: ‘We all have a role to play in getting innovations quicker’

Haseeb Ahmad: ‘We all have a role to play in getting innovations quicker’

Haseeb Ahmad, president of the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI), sits down with National Health Executive as part of our Last Word Q&A series. Would you talk us throu more > more last word articles >

health service focus

View all News

comment

NHS England dementia director prescribes rugby for mental health and dementia patients

23/09/2019NHS England dementia director prescribes rugby for mental health and dementia patients

Reason to celebrate as NHS says watching rugby can be good for your mental ... more >
Peter Kyle MP: It’s time to say thank you this Public Service Day

21/06/2019Peter Kyle MP: It’s time to say thank you this Public Service Day

Taking time to say thank you is one of the hidden pillars of a society. Bei... more >

interviews

Matt Hancock says GP recruitment is on the rise to support ‘bedrock of the NHS’

24/10/2019Matt Hancock says GP recruitment is on the rise to support ‘bedrock of the NHS’

Today, speaking at the Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP) annual... more >

the scalpel's daily blog

NHS at 72: Managing mental health services going forward

03/07/2020NHS at 72: Managing mental health services going forward

Sean Duggan, Chief Executive of the Mental Health Network Let’s take this opportunity to reflect on the amazing achievements of our health system over the past few ... more >
read more blog posts from 'the scalpel' >

editor's comment

26/06/2020Adapting and Innovating

Matt Roberts, National Health Executive Editorial Lead. NHE May/June 2020 Edition We’ve been through so much as a health sector and a society in recent months with coronavirus and nothing can take away from the loss and difficulties that we’ve faced but it vital we also don’t disregard the amazing efforts we’ve witnessed. Staff have gone above and beyond, whole hospitals and trusts have flexed virtually at will to meet demand and pressures and we’ve... read more >