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Yorkshire Ambulance Service Charitable Fund Supports ?Dementia Friendly? Patient Reception Centres

22 April 2016

The Yorkshire Ambulance Service Charitable Fund has paid for improvements to the Patient Reception Centres at Rotherham Hospital, Barnsley Hospital and Doncaster Royal Infirmary to create better environments for visitors with dementia.

The simple but effective design improvements have been carried out in consideration of visuospatial problems associated with dementia and include:
new artwork to stimulate interest or reminiscence
a large-faced clock with day and date 
a full range of specialist reminiscence books and games that provide meaningful activity to reduce agitation and distress and also aid discussion and interaction
planting to soften the clinical environment.

Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust (YAS) is working to become a 'dementia friendly' organisation and has provided a programme of dementia awareness training to staff and incorporated a dementia-friendly design into new non-emergency ambulances.

A Little Book of Reminiscence has also been produced for use on PTS ambulances and in Patient Reception Centres. The book contains a range of photographs from the 1940s, 1950s and 1960s which have kindly been provided to YAS under license from the Science and Society Picture Library, Bradford Museums, Calderdale Museum and Scarborough Museums Trust. Reminiscence resources of this nature have been proven to reduce distress and aid conversation, often about happier times that can be recollected much easier from earlier in the person's life.  

The Yorkshire and Humberside Dementia Action Alliance recognised the work which has been carried out by awarding YAS the 'Working to become Dementia Friendly' logo which is displayed on all frontline ambulance vehicles.

In support of the project, the YAS Charitable Fund is funding the dementia friendly improvements to Patient Reception Centres at hospitals across Yorkshire where patients wait for transport to return home. This followed the successful pilot of a similar initiative at the Patient Reception Centre at Leeds General Infirmary.

The YAS Charitable Fund is a registered charity which receives donations and legacies from grateful patients, members of the public and fundraising initiatives and events to support the work of YAS.

Maria Amos, Fundraiser with the YAS Charitable Fund, said: "The charity is delighted to be able to fund this initiative and we are already seeing the positive difference it is making to patients. Although the improvements have been made in support of Yorkshire Ambulance Service's dementia friendly pledge, they are of benefit to all Patient Reception Centre visitors."

Produced By: Corporate Communications Department