Hospital activity club wins national award

Wishaw General staff use reminiscence activities to help patients with dementia during their time in hospital.
Wishaw General staff use reminiscence activities to help patients with dementia during their time in hospital.

Wishaw General Hospital has won a national award for staff’s commitment to helping patients with dementia.

The Meaningful Activity Club was recognised in the acute care initiative category at Scotland’s Dementia Awards held in Glasgow.

Senior nurse for older people Janice Miles said: “It’s wonderful for the staff to be recognised in this way. They do fantastic work through the club to help patients who have dementia and to support their families.

“The club offers exercise, reminiscence activities, arts and crafts, musical events and visits from local children and specially-trained therapy pets. It’s also a great venue for patients and families to enjoy a cuppa and a chat.

“We also have an old-style shop to take patients with dementia on a trip down Memory Lane.

“The club was developed because we recognised that people with dementia in hospital were frequently becoming distressed because of unmet needs, specifically related to boredom and lack of activity.

“Staff grew to understand that meaningful activity could help the patients feel valued and recognised.”

The awards are a partnership between the charity Alzheimer Scotland, NHS Education for Scotland, NHS Health Scotland and the Scottish Social Services Council.

Wishaw General had two of the three finalists in the acute care category of the awards, presented at a ceremony in the Marriott Hotel.

The second nomination was for John’s Campaign, an initiative that supports people with dementia by ensuring their families and carers can stay with them on the ward round the clock.

Director of hospital services Marion Mark said: “It’s a great tribute to our staff that they had two award nominations and won for the Meaningful Activity Club.

“It’s a fantastic initiative, much loved by patients, their relatives and carers, which highlights our commitment to doing all we can to help people who have dementia during their time in hospital.”