The QEH.

A new campaign has been launched at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital (QEH) in King’s Lynn to support dementia patients.

The Dementia Care Appeal, backed by Your Local Paper, has a target of £40,000 to buy equipment and activities to improve the experience of those living with  a range of progressive disorders affecting the brain, including Alzheimer’s disease.

The trust hopes to buy new or upgrade its Reminiscence Interactive Therapy and Activities (RITA) devices to help patients feel more at ease during their hospital stay. 

Staff and volunteers use 24-inch touch screen devices to connect patients with activities such as listening to music and poetry, and to take part in interactive games, which helps to trigger conversations and memories.

Dr James Casson, clinical director for integrated care of the older person at QEH, said: “A hospital stay can feel daunting at the best of times, but for our patients living with dementia, there are additional challenges. 

“We want every one of our patients to have the best possible experience at QEH and I’m really pleased that our latest appeal will support us to strengthen our services for patients living with dementia. 

“The equipment and activities we are hoping to purchase will make a positive difference to the wellbeing of our patients, which in turn, improves physical health outcomes too.” 

The trust is also hoping to buy 25 dementia-friendly calendar clocks for each bay of the hospital’s 18 wards. 

The calendar clocks can reduce confusion and support patients living with dementia to easily access the day, date and time.

Funds from the appeal, supported by corporate sponsor Kenneth Bush Solicitors in Lynn, and also backed by Radio West Norfolk, could be used to buy activity packs specially designed to entertain, boost independence and support changing abilities in patients.

These would be purchased from specialist provider Relish and include games, reminiscence cards and jigsaw puzzles. 

Individuals and organisations are being asked to sponsor specific items of their choice and can contact the trust’s fundraising team on 01553 613373 or email laurence.morlaas@qehkl.nhs.uk for details.

Two years ago, the hospital teamed-up with YLP to raise around £30,000 for a Falls Support Appeal to buy much-needed specialist equipment to help prevent and manage falls.

Alice Webster, QEH chief nurse, said: “We are extremely grateful to have a fantastic local community which has supported our previous fundraising appeals which have enabled us to make significant improvements at QEH. 

“We are hoping that once again our local businesses and communities will back our Dementia Care Appeal and enable us to purchase this specialist equipment which will really make a difference to the care and wellbeing of our patients living with dementia. No donation is too small.” 

 You can donate to the Dementia Care Appeal via: justgiving.com/QEHDementiaCareAppeal

Anyone wanting to send a cheque should make it payable to: Dementia Care Appeal, the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Gayton Road, King’s Lynn, PE30 4ET.     

See page 46 of today’s YLP where you will find a special coupon for your donation to the appeal.