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Donation brings RITA to older people’s wards

Dementia Coordinators demonstrating the new device

Reminiscence therapy is helping elderly patients across the Royal United Hospitals Bath thanks to a charitable donation that has funded an additional device called RITA.

RITA stands for Reminiscence Interactive Therapy Activities and it enables patients to enjoy a range of games, listen to music, view old photographs and watch films, to help spark memories and start conversations on the wards.

RUH Dementia Coordinator, Astrid Siddorn said: “We would like to say a big thank you to Chris at Bath Woodburners and the other two companies. During these strange times, hospital stays for people with dementia have become even more difficult, especially without loved ones to visit.

“Your donation for a RITA enables us to support more patients as it reduce patents’ anxiety when they are out of their familiar environment, making patients’ stay in hospital more comfortable.”

RITA is mostly used on the hospital’s older people’s wards but can be used by anyone to help reduce anxiety and distress when someone is out of their familiar environment. In additional to the popular reminiscence apps, patients can play bingo, quizzes as well as watch historic speeches and archive BBC news footage.

Chris Clements, of Bath Woodburners said: “My wife, Cerys and I, were personally very impressed with the work of the RUH and the care received by Cerys’ father, Joe Francis, when he was admitted last year. He was cared for incredibly well in a hugely difficult time for hospitals.

“We have been a fortunate business fitting wood burning stoves for people in the community during the pandemic and this busy period has enabled us and two other respected businesses to work together on giving something back to the community.

“We heard about the RITA devices which seemed like a great idea and we know it will provide a valuable resource in helping those with dementia, their families and the staff at the RUH.”

There are now five RITA devices in the RUH and it is hoped that additional RITA devices can be funded to support more patients in the future.

If you would like to find out how you can make a difference to patients and staff at the RUH please click here