Carer struck off for saying she’d ‘drown resident at birth’

Lynne Cochrane was reprimanded for her behaviour at a respite centre in North Ayrshire.

Struck off: Lynne Cochrane made derogatory comments about residents. <strong>Pixabay</strong>
Struck off: Lynne Cochrane made derogatory comments about residents. Pixabay

A care worker who said she would have drowned a service user at birth – or words to that effect – has been struck off the register.

In front of a resident receiving respite care, Lynne Cochrane told a colleague “if I’d had that, I’d have drowned it at birth” or “if they were my child, I would rather have lost than for them to live like that” or words to that effect.

Cochrane called a resident a “fat, lazy b******” as they hadn’t got out of their pyjamas all day. 

She also stated “I’m sick of her” or words to that effect when told to support another resident.

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In addition, Cochrane also made disparaging comments about her colleagues – branding them “two-faced” amongst other things.

A Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC) panel reprimanded her for her misconduct, which took place at respite centre Taigh Mor in Beith, North Ayrshire, between November 2016 and April 2017.

In a written ruling, the SSSC stated that her fitness to practise was impaired.

The panel said: “You said in the presence of a person using services that ‘if I’d had that, I’d have drowned it at birth’, or words to that effect, or in the alternative ‘if they were my child I would rather have lost than for them to live like that’ or words to that effect.

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“Doing so risked causing harm to the service user in that they might have become distressed and suffered emotional harm as a result of your words.

“It also demonstrated disrespect towards and a disregard for the autonomy and dignity of the resident which opens to question your ability to safely and effectively deliver care.”

The SSSC described Cochrane’s overall behaviour as “serious”.

The panel said: “Your actions risked causing harm to people using services, although no harm was caused.

“They raise concerns as to your attitude and values, which may be difficult to remediate.

“They violated fundamental values of the profession in that they indicated profound disrespect for people using services.”

The watchdog said there was a high risk of repetition as the incidents were “numerous and analogous, forming a pattern”.

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Cochrane also failed to demonstrate insight and regret in relation to her actions.

Striking her off the register, the panel stated: “The public would be extremely concerned by your behaviour towards people using services, in particular.

“They would regard a person making the statements alleged as being entirely unsuitable to provide care to vulnerable adults.

“A finding that your fitness to practise is not impaired would jeopardise confidence in the profession and the regulator.

“The SSSC considers that a removal order is the most appropriate sanction as it is both necessary and justified in the public interest and to maintain the continuing trust and confidence in the social service profession and the SSSC as the regulator of the profession.”

Cochrane admitted that her fitness to practise was impaired and accepted the removal order, which came into effect on Friday.


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