Often when an elderly person is in hospital or other care setting and in particular, those with family living with dementia, visiting a relative can be difficult for them, as they do not know what to talk about and run out of things to say.
In these circumstances, the relative often makes brief visits, or may even avoid visiting completely for fear of awkward moments.
Software technology has a part to play in supporting care and the person. Even though people are family, they struggle forming conversations and run out of things to say and do together. It is therefore a pleasant experience when triggers are made available through the software that can promote and extend those conversations.
It is nice for the family or carer to see how their relative may positively respond to them during the time they have spent with them. They will be able to look at older images, photographs and listen to music. They are also able to contribute to Collage work.
This is a piece of information that records their preferences and consists of pictorial and narrative images and can serve as a prompt for conversation, not only for the relative, but also for the nursing staff as it becomes a platform for person-centred care. The staff learn more about them, their likes and dislikes. The collage can be printed off, laminated and sit on the bedside cabinet. It is helpful, with changes of staff, shifts etc., that the wheel is not being reinvented and there is consistency in the cycle of their care.
Relatives can contribute to Life Story work, a lasting legacy of their relative. The technology is portable and can facilitate the support of care at home and often make valuable use of resource in allowing relatives to return to work.
It also reinforces and reassures family that hospitals are committed to a level of care by virtue of the investments that they have made in the software.