Friends of Dorchester Hospital donate £50,000 for dementia ward
CARE for dementia patients is set to improve further at Dorset County Hospital thanks to generous charitable funding.
The Friends of Dorset County Hospital are donating more than £50,000 from a legacy they received for equipment and environmental improvements on Barnes Ward.
The elderly care ward has already done much to improve the support offered to patients suffering with dementia. Their day room has been refurbished to look like a lounge and dining room from the 1950s, complete with vintage furniture and fittings and authentic household appliances such as a television and radio.
Dementia patients can find clinical surroundings confusing and distressing. Often their memories from the past are much clearer so spending time in the familiar environment of the ‘Memory Lane’ room is reassuring.
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The money from the Friends will be used to remove the central nurses’ station to create a seating area for patients, create clearer signs and colour coded walls, railings and doors to guide patients around the ward and add to the day room. Portable touch and sensory equipment will also be purchased to help patients who are bed bound.
Healthcare Assistant Samantha Watt, who runs the Memory Lane Room, said she and her colleagues were extremely grateful for the Friends’ funding: “These improvements will make such a huge difference to patients.
“The nurses’ station can be intimidating and confusing for patients so removing that will make a big impact and we are going to make it much easier for patients to identify the different areas of the ward. We’ll also be able to refresh the Memory Lane room which is fantastic. We can’t thank the Friends enough.”
Friends Chairman John Weir said they were delighted to be able to fund these improvements: “We do feel that dementia is an underfunded area generally and there’s a growing need. The Barnes Ward team have already done a great deal for patients and we are really pleased to help them further improve the care and support for elderly people coming into hospital.”