logo waht new


Health column - Joni Breen

There are about 7,500 people in Worcestershire living with dementia, and it’s a figure that’s going to grow. You’ve probably met someone with dementia, but you might not have realised it. One in four patients on our wards has dementia.

I work as part of our nursing team ensuring that the care with provide for these patients is the very best it can be.

Next week, 17 – 23 May, the Alzheimer’s Society is encouraging those with dementia to ‘Do Something New’.

The word dementia describes a set of symptoms including memory loss, mood changes and communication problems. It is caused when the brain is damaged by diseases, like Alzheimer's disease or stroke. Dementia gets worse over time.

In 2021, there will be over one million people in the UK with dementia. But we know that life doesn't end when dementia begins. Having dementia doesn't mean stopping doing the things you love and trying new things.

There are lots of simple things people with dementia and their loved ones can do differently this week.

Why not:

  • Try out a new recipe
  • Sign up for a language class
  • Find a new sport or exercise to try out for the first time
  • Start making plans for that big trip you've always wanted to go on
  • Get a totally new hairstyle (or colour!)
  • Visit somewhere you've never been before
  • Learn to juggle
  • Go to the theatre, opera or ballet

During the week at Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust we will be preparing for a completely new project within our hospitals. We are one of only two hospitals in the country chosen to take part in the Alzheimer’s Society’s new Side by Side project.

We are very excited about this new service, which will help people with dementia to keep doing the things they love and get out and about, with the support of a volunteer.

It will enhance care experiences in our hospitals by bringing volunteer and community services onto the ward. We are looking forward to piloting this on one of our wards in June.