South East Wales

Nurse Emma Marsden 'worked as escort' on sick leave

A nurse worked as an escort while on sick leave from her job at a Cardiff hospital, a disciplinary panel has heard.

Emma Marsden, 35, allegedly posted pictures of herself on a range of escort websites while signed off work at Whitchurch Hospital in 2008.

She faces being struck off as a registered nurse if she is found to have breached professional standards.

She did not appear at the conduct hearing and was not represented.

A conduct and competence committee hearing of the Nursing and Midwifery Council was told Miss Marsden, from Roath, Cardiff, resigned from her job with "immediate effect" after learning she was being investigated.

The claims surfaced after an anonymous tip-off that she was offering sex with "men, women or couples" on four escort websites which advertised sex for sale.

Presenting officer Salim Hafejee said: "One member of staff received an anonymous phone call indicating Miss Marsden was working selling her services as an escort.

"The source seemed to be aware she was on sick leave. When the concern was raised, the trust launched an investigation into the matter."

'Website reviews'

Miss Marsden, who worked for the NHS for more than 10 years, is said to have worked as an escort during two month-long spells of sick leave during 2008.

Mr Hafejee said: "Witnesses identified the woman in the pictures as Emma Marsden who worked at the trust.

"When contacted Miss Marsden accepted it was her that had appeared but said she was merely investigating the possibility of working as an escort if she didn't return to nursing.

"In light of the reviews being left on the website, it is more likely that she was in fact offering these services and did receive payment."

Craig Greenstock, internal audit manager at the Cardiff and Vale NHS Trust, told the hearing Miss Marsden advertised herself under a false name.

He said: "There was also a mobile number advertised. When I checked her personnel files it was the same number.

"A photo in her personnel file was also a very good likeness if not identical to the one on the escort website."

The hearing in Cardiff was adjourned until Tuesday.