A ‘caring’ pharmacist who claimed to have pinched a £ 10 bottle of perfume as a treat for her niece and 84 stomach acid pills for her husband has been suspended.
Sabiha Khan was caught on CCTV with a bag containing perfume and three boxes of prescription-only medicine at the end of her shift at the Birmingham Pharmacy.
The “dishonest” worker first told managers who caught her in the act that she had receipts for all items, but then blamed the lack of food and sleep for her unruly behavior.
Officials decided to revisit earlier footage and found that Khan – who had worked as a pharmacist for almost two decades – had also stolen perfume from a cupboard at Lloyds Pharmacy twice previously.
She denied stealing perfume on multiple occasions during an interview with bosses, but changed her story when she realized they had spotted all of her antics on camera.
The pharmacist said: “I’m sorry, I know I ruined my career doing this, but before that I never stole anything in my life.”
Khan worked as an emergency pharmaceutical manager one day a week at the Kings Heath branch in Vicarage Road.
Colleagues decided to perform a routine “business closure check”, finding perfume and three 40 mg boxes of pantoprazole in his carry bag on July 17, 2019.
Khan was immediately suspended, saying she was “shocked and upset”, but was later fired following an investigation.
She told a General Pharmaceutical Council (GPC) committee that the drug was for herself but that she didn’t have a prescription with her and thought it would be “less serious if she said it was for. someone else”.
Khan said she gifted the perfume to her niece, who she planned to see later that evening before leaving for the overseas.
She only noticed the cheap perfume after removing the cash register from the counter at the end of her shift and did not leave any cash at the pharmacy because “the money could have disappeared.”
Khan said she intended to return to the pharmacy the next day – despite her stoppage of work – to pay for the items, the committee heard.
The pharmacist claimed that she also took perfume without paying on July 3, 2019, because it was a tester – which was disputed by officials.
A report from the committee read: “During the initial research on July 17, she said she was shocked and upset at not thinking clearly and a week later, at the first investigative meeting, she said. that she had slept or ate little, which prevented her from earning much. sense.
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“She accepted that she initially told investigators that the prescription for the drugs she had with her on July 17 was for her husband, when in fact it was for herself.
“Given the inconsistency and the acceptance that she had not always told the truth, the committee could not consider her a reliable and credible witness at all times and approached her testimony with care.”
He added: “She found out that she did not have the prescription with her and decided to take the three boxes of tablets (84 in total) home.
“She was planning on coming back to the pharmacy the next morning, before it opened at 9 a.m., even though it wasn’t a working day for her.”
Khan admitted to stealing perfume on July 3 and 17, 2019, as well as medicine on July 17, 2019.
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She denied that his conduct was dishonest and another charge of theft of perfume on June 26, 2019, saying she only removed it from a closet to “smell” it.
But the GPC panel disagreed, deeming that Khan had been “dishonest”, “deliberately” took all the evidence and his actions were wrong.
The panel suspended her for eight months following a four-day hearing in August.
His report said: “There has been a pattern of behavior shown by CCTV these three days when Khan looked in the closet and took out items at the same time of day when the premises were locked, no members of the public were ‘was present, there was only one other member of staff present and the cash register had been locked upstairs. “
He added: “The committee had heard that Khan had been a caring, knowledgeable and committed pharmacist for almost two decades now.
“She was motivated by her ability to take care of her patients and not by financial reasons.”
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