Portiuncula University Hospital (PUH ) with support from the National Dementia Office launched ‘Seo Is Mise - This is Me’ in the hospital recently.
‘Seo Is Mise – This is Me’ is a quality improvement initiative developed by the Occupational Therapy and Medical Social Work Departments in PUH. It includes a Dementia Resource Pack which has been designed to empower patients and families to make effective decisions and choices regarding their future care. The four medical and surgical wards at the hospital will also have access to a Dementia Activity Box suited to individuals requiring stimulation with therapeutic intervention.
“Approximately one in three patients aged 70 and older admitted to Irish hospitals have dementia and this figure will increase annually as the population ages. People living with dementia are among the most vulnerable patients in hospital. They are often older, frail, and very prone to delirium, falls, pressure ulcers, and malnutrition which are key safety issues in hospitals.
“Included in the information pack is the ‘Seo Is Mise – This is Me’ booklet containing information for service users and their families on the availability of support services in Ballinasloe and surrounding areas. It also includes the ‘Think Ahead’ form developed by the Irish Hospice Foundation which encourages service users and their families to discuss and record their wishes in regards to all aspects of their future care,” Siobhan Coen, Occupational Therapist at Portiuncula University Hospital, stated.
Another part of the initiative is the introduction of a Dementia Activity Box to enhance the patient’s experience at the hospital.
“The Dementia Activity Box aims to promote a more cognitively stimulating environment for our patients with dementia. The box is equipped with a variety of both traditional and new technology products such as jigsaws, conversation balls and iPads which will be used to cognitively stimulate patients and hopefully better build relationships among staff and their patients. These products are evidence-based to facilitate engaging conversations, stimulate senses and promote reminiscence between patients with dementia, staff and carers. It will support optimum health and wellbeing during the patient’s hospital stay and help reduce the anxiety and confusion that can occur whilst in an unfamiliar hospital environment,” Siobhan Coen, said.
“Staff from Occupational Therapy and Medical Social Work have worked closely together to introduce this fantastic new initiative focusing on driving innovation and further education to benefit our patients. It is important that we have greater supports in place to ease the journey through our hospital for our patients. Ensuring we have processes to assist in meeting the needs of our patients is a priority for the hospital,” James Keane, General Manager at Portiuncula University Hospital welcoming the initiative, remarked.