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Nurse cancelled, disqualified and prohibited for 12 months for inappropriate use and handling of drugs

13 Feb 2024

A nurse has been cancelled, disqualified and prohibited for 12-months for obtaining and mishandling drugs including fentanyl, incorrect records, breaching conditions of his registration and dishonesty.

The Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (NMBA) referred Matthew Angelo Antonelli to the Western Australian State Administrative Tribunal (tribunal) in relation to 10 allegations of professional misconduct.

The NMBA alleged that in August 2018, and on multiple occasions in 2020, Mr Antonelli inappropriately discarded, misappropriated or inappropriately obtained and handled schedule 8 drugs including fentanyl while at work. It further alleged he breached conditions which had been imposed on his registration and provided false or misleading information, and failed to provide relevant information, to Ahpra, the NMBA and his employer about the conditions and his employment status.

On 4 December 2020, the NMBA used immediate action powers to impose conditions on Mr Antonelli’s registration, which required him to be supervised while practising. In May 2021 further immediate action was taken to suspend Mr Antonelli’s registration.

On 19 December 2023 the tribunal made orders that Mr Antonelli’s behaviour amounted to professional misconduct and that he be reprimanded, have his registration cancelled, and be disqualified from applying for registration for 12 months. The tribunal also prohibited Mr Antonelli from providing any health service for 12 months and ordered him to pay the NMBA’s legal costs in the sum of $4500.

Including the period Mr Antonelli was suspended under immediate action, he will have a total period out of practice of more than three and a half years before he is eligible to reapply for registration.

Read the tribunal’s full decision on the AustLII website.

Page reviewed 13/02/2024