View By Date Contact Me

FORGET ME NOT

Posted: 1st January 2013

Forget me not - dementia help in hospitals

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-20547386

"Hospitals can be scary places for a lot of people, says Dementia Nurse Specialist, Bridget Fordham.
She has worked to make the wards she works on less daunting for people with dementia.
Four key wards at St Thomas' Hospital in London now have brighter coloured walls with clear signs and each patient with dementia is given a distinctive blue wrist band.
Bridget explains how these new changes may improve hospital stays for people with the condition.
Video journalist Smitha Mundasad"
- 3 December 2012
 

This very simple, 'small-action, big reward' approach to patients with dementia is interesting. Just a basic way of visually displaying that someone needs extra care in a dignified and unobtrusive way is really quite sensitive and yet direct.

The red jugs and trays also to monitor fluid intake and food is vital for the patients health.

As well as a simple change of a colour of a door and adding images for way-finding is small, simple ways of reducing anxiety for people.

As part of the CORE principles in the pdf below - these small steps will help feel patients feel safer - and in doing so will make the staff's job easier as they are calmer and perhaps more willing to co-operate with procedures.

http://www.uhcw.nhs.uk/latest-news/news?action=view&newsID=482

http://www.uhcw.nhs.uk/clientfiles/File/Dementia-DL-Leaflet.pdf - pdf

 

On a personal note - when my Grandma was in hospital, she though they were killing her by stabbing her in the stomach. It turns out that it was medication through an injection that was given to patients as they were in bed and quite immobile each day. But because no one had really told her what it was (or, perhaps didn't regularly remind her) the residual feelings of fear remained and still had lasting affects about medication and people touching her long after she left hospital.
The little things make a huge difference.

 

Further Reading

Transforming Space - House in a Suitcase

This is an interesting use of functional design, space and multi-purpose furniture.