29 April 2019

An appeal is being made for knitters to help create blankets and even bags for patients living with dementia whilst they are in hospital.

The Dementia Team at SaTH is looking for people to help knit or donate colourful knitted blankets.

Karen Breese and Lucy Davies from the dementia team at SaTH

The blankets help patients, particularly those with dementia, to find their way back to bed more easily – and also see the edge of the bed more clearly when getting in and out. They also provide a more homely feel to the wards.

The scheme has been successful at other hospitals and now the team is keen to roll it out at the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital and the Princess Royal Hospital in Telford.

Karen Breese, Dementia Clinical Specialist Nurse at SaTH, said: “We had such a good response from the community when we asked if they were able to knit us Twiddlemuffs, which provide a stimulation activity for our patients living with dementia. Now we are asking for help and support again, this time to provide us with knitted blankets and knitted bags.

“Due to infection control, the blankets are single-use items and they will be taken home with the patient when they are discharged. They must be knitted using new wool, or if anyone is planning to donate blankets, they need to be brand new. The blankets should also be brightly coloured or patterned, and 3ft wide.

“There are no size restrictions with length, although please be aware some of our patients like to put the blankets around their shoulders as well, so shorter lengths would be preferable. The first two blankets were given out to two patients this week and they were really well received by the patients.”

The team is also appealing for people to help knit or donate knitted bags as patients enjoy holding them and using them to put in tissues and other items they may require during their hospital stay.

Karen said: “A colleague knitted ten of these bags which were given out on wards and they received great feedback. The bags can be any size, however the handles need to be short to prevent injury, and again they must be made using brand new wool.

“We are appealing for anyone who enjoys knitting, or who belongs to a knitting group – and also anyone with new blankets that they don’t need – to please get in touch. We would be so grateful for their support.”

Any donations of knitted blankets and bags can be left at the main receptions at both RSH and PRH. For more information contact Karen.Breese@nhs.net