Dementia care in Carlisle given £2.6m boost

Artist's impression of the new unit
Image caption The unit will feature enclosed courtyards

Health chiefs have unveiled plans to invest £2.6m in caring for people with dementia in Cumbria.

Work on the assessment unit at the Carleton Clinic in Carlisle will start in September, and will include 15 en-suite bedrooms.

Cumbria Partnership NHS Foundation Trust said it will feature innovative designs to help patients with dementia.

It will include inside and outside areas, activity spaces and colours and themes to distinguish rooms.

Trust nurse consultant in old age psychiatry, Valerie Provan, said: "The new unit will offer an enclosed external courtyard and garden spaces, social spaces that provide a comfortable and dignified environment to meet relatives and friends, and activity spaces to support independence in daily activities where possible.

"The activity spaces are designed to help patients to maintain their existing skills and abilities.

"The improvements will reduce the length of stay for patients, reduce the need for medication, and improve complex behaviour associated with dementia."

Among the features will be memory boxes in which patients can put sentimental items with the aim of helping them to get used to the unit and feel safer.

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