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13 October 2012, 08:19
A specialist from the James Paget Hospital In Gorleston who brought an HIV infected blood sample into the country in his hand luggage has been allowed to look for work while his case goes before the General Medical Council.
A court heard how Tubonye Harry - who was a genito-urinary specialist at the James Paget Hospital in Gorleston - was returning from Nigeria, where he did private work.
The judge said the sample should have been packed in the aircraft's hold and Dr Harry had breached regulations designed to prevent passengers being exposed to infection.
Dr Harry had also broken rules by opening a package containing the sample at home instead of in a laboratory, the judge added. He was dismissed by James Paget bosses earlier this year.
Details of the case emerged as Mr Justice Burnett ruled on a dispute between Dr Harry and the General Medical Council (GMC) - which registers doctors - at a High Court hearing in London. Dr Harry, who also faced a number of other allegations relating to his work, has been suspended pending the outcome of GMC disciplinary proceedings, the judge was told.
But he argued that the GMC's 18-month interim suspension was unfair and unnecessary - and the judge agreed.
Mr Justice Burnett terminated the suspension, which prevented Harry from seeking alternative work, saying it was "disproportionate".
Dr Harry qualified as a doctor in 1979 and had been a consultant since 1996. He carried the infected blood from Nigeria in 2010 and lost his job at the James Paget in January. Hospital bosses had then referred the case to the GMC, the judge was told.