Successful dementia-friendly environment bid cash bears fruit

The new room at Glebefields Care Home in Drayton, Banbury will be officially opened at 3pm on Friday June 20, which is also National Care Home Open Day.

The room can be used as one or sectioned off into compartments where residents can relax using all their senses from the lights, pictures, mood music and aromatherapy.

Dignity Plus Programme

The £1.53m awarded by the Department of Health to the council, which leads the Dignity Plus Programme, has been divided between 18 residential and nursing homes in Oxfordshire - where more than 800 residents with dementia live - to help raise the standard of care there.

Other improvements undertaken elsewhere include changes to flooring and the creation of quiet places, designed to create calmer surroundings for those living with dementia.

The funding assists the Oxfordshire Dementia Programme, a joint plan involving health and social care teams in the county which designed to raise awareness of the condition locally and working towards sharing expertise and learning.

Seven community hospital wards in Oxfordshire have also received a slice of funding to help make improvements.

Improving people's lives

Glebefields Care Home Manager, Edyta Ortel, said: “This allows us to improve our residents’ life not only suffering from dementia. It focuses on multi-sensory stimulation bringing variety to our meaningful activity programme and provides comfort. Residents have excellent facility to relax and brings a priceless value to our home.”

Glebefields Care Home's Social Care Manager, Joyce Furey, said: “ The sensory room meets several needs of residents not least a calm and pleasant quiet environment for those who simply want to get away from it all and relax.”

Councillor Judith Heathcoat, Oxfordshire County Council's Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, said: "I was delighted when the county council heard that our funding bid to central government was successful and now it is clear that the money has been put to excellent use by the participating care homes.

"The creation of dementia-friendly environments will improve people's lives - many of the changes implemented are designed to simulate residents' senses and to provide calm surroundings."