By James Dunn | Daily Mail |
A GP who forced a white family off their farm in Zimbabwe through links with the Mugabe regime has resigned after his practice was put into special measures.
Dr Sylvester Nyatsuro resigned on Wednesday, the day before a damning inspection report on his Nottingham surgery the Willows Medical Centre was published.
The critic report by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) unearthed a catalogue of failures at the ‘chaotic surgery,’ where a healthcare assistant posed as a doctor.
Dr Nyatsuro hit the headlines in February after the Rankin family was forced off their £1million farm in September by 20 henchmen armed with AK47s.
They arrived with a government document saying that Dr Nyatsuro, who has close political connections with Mugabe, was now the rightful owner of the plantation.
Two dozen settlers then moved into a nearby cottage and caused problems for the family, according to Mrs Rankin, 54, who has three children with her husband.
Dr Nyatsuro, 45, who is originally from the African country but now lives in Nottingham, refused to apologise to the Rankins when approached for comment.
It is unclear if he will return to Zimbabwe after closing down the surgery, which will have a dramatic impact on the doctor’s income.
The report showed that an unqualified member of staff at the practice undertook diagnoses and assessments of patients and even carried out internal examinations.
Organisation at the practice was described as ‘chaotic’ and employees said there was a culture of fear and blame, with staff being reprimanded or shouted at by management.
The damning report also found there was not enough staff to keep patients safe, with medication reviews undertaken by non-clinical staff.
There was even evidence that tasks which should have been done by a nurse were being routinely done by staff who didn’t have appropriate training.
The CQC report branded the surgery, in Carlton, Notts., as ‘inadequate’ overall with its level of care rated as ‘requires improvement’.
It was also given individual ratings of ‘inadequate’ for its safety, management, effectiveness, and responsiveness.
The practice, which was closed in June this year, is expected to remain closed while NHS England works with the local clinical commissioning group to decide its future.
Around 4,000 patients were advised to go to nearby surgeries following the closure but no explanation was provided at the time.
Janet Williamson, deputy chief inspector of general practice and dentistry at the CQC, said a ‘considerable’ number of concerns were uncovered after the inspection in June.
She added: ‘The practice had knowingly employed a healthcare assistant to undertake medical examinations which were outside the scope of the role and for which the individual was not registered or regulated.
She added: ‘There was a culture of fear and blame within the practice and we were not assured that all significant events were reported and used as opportunities to improve safety within the practice.
The CQC also revealed 70 patients had been recalled as a precautionary measure following their report’s findings.
Dr James Hopkinson, clinical lead for the Nottingham North and East Clinical Commissioning Group, said: ‘We are shocked by the CQC’s findings and we are sorry that the patients have been let down in this way.
‘As commissioners, we also feel let down by this practice.
‘What has happened is an unacceptable breach of trust and the standards of care we expect for our patients.
‘We want to reassure patients that this is highly unusual and is not representative of the standards upheld by the overwhelming majority of our GPs and practice staff.
‘We are extremely grateful for the support of four other practices in the immediate area which have stepped in to make sure that the majority of the 3,600 patients registered at the Willows continue to receive the ongoing care they need.’
The CCG confirmed that it and NHS England ‘had received a formal resignation from Dr Nyatsuro in relation to his GP contract’.
There were protests at the Willows Medical Centre earlier this year after Dr Nyatsuro was accused of seizing land from Zimbabwean tobacco farmers.
Phillip Rankin and his wife Anita were evicted from the £1million farm by a gang of 20 men armed with AK47 guns in February.
The valuable 2,000-acre property was seized and given to Zimbabwean-born Dr Nyatsuro who lives 7,500 miles away in Nottingham.
The wealthy GP, who moved to Britain in 2000 and owns a clinic specialising in weight loss techniques, is believed to be close to dictator Robert Mugabe.
Campaigners say the controversial ‘land grab’ was another example of the 91-year-old president seizing land from white farmers and giving it to black Zimbabweans.
But Dr Nyatsuro claims the land lawfully belongs to him and his wife Veronica and claims it wasn’t taken as part of the redistribution scheme.