A significant problem for A&E teams is that they can be treating patients with complex needs and challenging behaviour. These patients are susceptible to stress, agitation and in many cases delirium. Therefore, Innovative solutions are needed to ensure that their needs are met in a patient-centred way whilst keeping them calm, informed, stimulated and distracted.
Patients living with Dementia, Mental Health issues and other such cognitive issues are prone to unwarranted admission in to wards due to their challenging behaviour. These patients are also much more likely to spend long periods in hospital and are at risk of further safeguarding issues such as falls. RITA has been evidenced to significantly reduce incidences of challenging behaviour by offering appropriate distraction in a person-centred way.
RITA has also proven effective with children in A&E as well. Read the case studies from Gloucester and Lincoln which very powerfully highlight RITA's value with children, particularly children with learning difficulties.
Royal Liverpool University Hospital Share an example of how effective RITA has been
Treating the elderly in hospital can be quite a frightening experience for them and one that can cause extreme agitation. When the person that is presenting, is one that has a potentially life threatening condition, it is even more difficult,
One such situation occurred when a lady was admitted to the Emergency Department with a potentially life threatening bleed. She would not co-operate and would not allow bloods to be taken, it was proving extremely difficult to communicate with her.
The power of the technology was positive in easing the lady’s agitation. Promoting confidence and trust with the clinical staff, we were able to take the bloods in a timely manner causing minimal distress in a dignified manner.
As her mood continued to lift, we moved to the music area. Her face lit up when she saw the old gramophone graphic and with a Liverpool flavour, we selected a song from the Beatles. She immediately launched into a rendition of ‘Let it Be’ She went on to tell us how she had been on stage with The Beatles at The Empire Theatre.
"Following on from the success with RITA at Gloucester Royal Hospital, where they have purchased multiple packages to contribute to their reduction in falls. Cheltenham Sunrise Rotary has agreed to purchase a unit for Cheltenham ED. We had a worrying increase in falls within ED at GRH in 2017 which can probably be attributed to the crowding situation and the RITA unit was a massive help in reducing the risk of falls at the hospital. However, I am aware that the unit has now been renamed ‘Tanya’s Telly’. It’s Brilliant.
Every day, I get comments and I am told stories about how it has helped. It has an unpredicted use in many settings."
Dr Tanya de Weymarn MBChB, FCEM (sub Spec PEM), BMedSc, DRCOG
Consultant Emergency Medicine Elderly care in the ED lead
Adult Safeguarding in the ED lead Research in the ED Lead
Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust