We have enlightened the Royal Berkshire Hospital – giving a new slant to their wards

Dr King, the dementia lead from the Royal Berkshire Hospital, visited our group in June. She asked our opinion about how we found the hospital at the moment, and what people thought about the hospital environment and attitudes of staff.

We gave our suggestions for improvements and how they could help people with dementia.

We were concerned about how often people are moved around in hospital.

We wanted doctors and nurses to talk directly to people with dementia and to acknowledge you.

Hospitals can be scary places and staff talking in groups can be off putting and confusing. It’s difficult to know who everyone is in a hospital.

She showed us the plans that had been drawn up by architects. The plans were what the wards could look like. She asked our opinions. We liked the idea of bringing nature into the ward and having bays themed on different colours and aspects of nature. We also liked the use of different pictures to help people know where they are.

She took what we told her back to her staff, the architects and people on the dementia steering group.

We also talked about signage and finding your way around the hospital – we hope they will come back to talk to us more about this. And we will keep you posted – watch this space!