With a Masters in Dementia Care and Sister to a ward that specialises in the condition, Claire knows first hand how going in to hospital affects people with dementia, and how your support can help.

"My name is Claire Lawson and I am a Sister on Brearley 7, which is one of the wards that specialises in dementia. Most of the patients I see have dementia or suspected dementia. I’ve been working here since 2012 and I became a Sister at the end of 2017.

My favourite part of the job has to be working the patients. I enjoy finding out how we can help them and who they are as a person. I have a Masters in Dementia Care as I’ve always wanted to work with people with dementia and learn the techniques we can use to help them.

People with dementia tend to feel disorientated and unsure about where they are when they come in to hospital. It can stop them from being able to do things they’d normally be able to do on their own – like eating a meal, or getting washed and dressed in the morning.

Once people with dementia stop washing, dressing and eating independently, they can easily forget how to. This can make it much harder for them to return to their own homes when they’re ready to leave hospital.

When patients are anxious and restless, they’re more likely to fall and injure themselves. When they’re scared and disorientated, they’re less able to communicate what they need. And if their dementia symptoms get worse, it becomes more and more difficult for them to go home. All of this can prolong a hospital stay. That’s where you come in.

By giving patients a better experience in hospital, you could help them get home sooner. And by ensuring they leave hospital feeling as well as possible, you really will make a lasting difference to their lives.

That’s why I’m asking the people of Sheffield to help me raise the first £25,000 by 19th July, so we can start improving life for these patients right away.

You’ll help people like Alan from Wincobank. He’s lived here in Sheffield his whole life, and was diagnosed with dementia last year. It’s people like him that make me so determined to make life better for patients with dementia. You can read more of his story here.

I’m very proud of the care that we provide to people with dementia. But by making a gift today, you’ll give a local person with dementia something above and beyond what the NHS already provides.

Your support will help take away the fear, anxiety and confusion that patients with dementia often feel – and the difference you make could stay with them for the rest of their lives. So please, donate or start fundraising today and help make life better for a local person with dementia."

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