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A scheme to support patients with dementia is being reinstated in North Wales


A scheme that allows families and carers to support people with dementia while they are in healthcare settings is being reintroduced in North Wales.

John’s Campaign is a national campaign which recognises the important role of family members who care for people living with dementia and people with complex needs. This also includes learning disabilities and or autism.

This access was temporarily suspended due to visiting restrictions put in place to protect patients and staff during the COVID-19 pandemic. Now that restrictions have been lifted this access is being reintroduced, starting with Bonney ward and Onnen ward at Wrexham Maelor Hospital and Ward 7 at Glan Clwyd Hospital.

Gaynor Thomason, Interim Executive Director of Nursing and Midwifery, said: “We recognise the important role that families and carers play in supporting people who have dementia or complex needs. They should not just be allowed in to healthcare settings, but should be welcomed.

“The past two years have been extremely difficult for people, especially those who have had loved ones in hospital they have not been able to help, let alone visit. This was necessary to protect our patients, staff and NHS services.

“Now that restrictions have been lifted and it is safe to do so, we are now really pleased to be able to start reintroducing this access.

“We know that many patients with dementia and other complex needs can be anxious, confused and lonely so it is important to ensure we provide safe and open visiting that supports families and carers to access to the hospital outside of normal visiting hours.”

To arrange access contact the ward or department directly.

Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board was the first health board in Wales to sign up to John’s Campaign in 2016. It allows the carer or family member to be present during general care, mealtime, outside of visiting hours and to be involved in decision making.

Earlier this year the Health Board signed its commitment to the new Dementia Friendly Hospital Charter for Wales. The Charter is the latest in a set of publications aimed at driving up standards of dementia care across health and social care settings in Wales. The Charter contains principles that hospitals should follow if they are to be dementia friendly. More information about this in the coming months.

You can find more information on the John’s Campaign website here.