A NEW £35,000 dementia-friendly ward at Fairfield Hospital has been unveiled. 

Ward 21, which has 23 beds, has specially-designed lighting, floor coverings, artwork and signs after research revealed decorative changes have a positive impact on patients.

Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust said the environment in which people with dementia are treated reduces falls and aggressive behaviours and improves staff morale, care quality and care outcomes.

Ward manager Judith Maden said: “It is widely recognised that a hospital stay can have a detrimental effect on patients with dementia and can be distressing.

“The environment in which we care for patients with dementia can make a huge difference and we have invested resources with the aim of making the ward less alienating for people with cognitive problems.”

The ward features a relaxation room, soft lighting and a music system. Toilets, showers and patient bays are colour coded with visual cues to aid memory.

Artwork focuses on local landmarks and scenery such as Holcombe Hill and the Sir Robert Peel statue so patients will recognise and relate to the images.