An Auckland doctor has been censured and ordered to pay $25,000 for claiming government funding as the lead maternity carer for patients, when he was not.
Paul Henderson was a director and obstetrician at Kate Sheppard Midwifery based on the North Shore in Auckland when a charge of professional misconduct was brought against him last year.
The Professional Conduct Committee said Dr Henderson submitted, or was responsible for submitting, claim forms to the Ministry of Health claiming funding as the lead maternity carer for patients, when he knew, or ought to have known, he was not the lead maternity carer for those patients.
The Ministry became concerned with the number of claims made by Dr Henderson for First Partial Fees - claiming the fees for 359 women, compared with the next highest obstetrician who was claiming fees for 53 women.
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An audit was conducted by the Audit and Compliance unit, which then complained to the Medical Council that he claimed for services as a lead maternity carer when the women had not selected him as their lead carer.
On March 30 this year Dr Henderson admitted the charge.
The New Zealand Health Practitioners Disciplinary Tribunal this week released its findings and censured Dr Henderson.
It also ordered him to pay a fine of $5000 as well as $10,000 to the Professional Conduct Committee, and $10,000 to the Tribunal by way of contribution to costs.