Staff in the Senior Adult Medical Services wards who care for the elderly at St Peter’s Hospital in Chertsey are appealing for donations of unwanted toys.
Consultant Dr Emma Wilkinson explains: “Patients with dementia often regress to their childhood and playthings like dolls or teddies can be of enormous benefit; they seem to have a calming effect on minds that are, at times, fragmented and frightening.
“If anyone has a teddy, doll or other soft toy that they are prepared to donate, it would greatly benefit patients and the staff trying to care for them. Please leave donations for the attention of Layla Hibbs on Cherry Ward at St Peter’s Hospital.”
Ward staff are also seeking knitters and crochet experts to create cannula sleeves.
Dr Wilkinson explains further: “We often need to leave cannulas taped to patients’ arms so that medication can be given easily without causing further distress. Patients with dementia, delirium and other mental health issues do not understand why these are needed and they pull them out. This not only causes further distress to themselves and loved ones, but means that we cannot help them to get better as fast as we would like.
"Knitted sleeves cover the cannula so the patient "fiddles" with the sleeve rather than the cannula. Even if you can crochet an odd flower or something similar that can be attached to these sleeves, it will make a difference."
You can download instructions by clicking here.