Latest visiting restrictions by hospital

To help us keep our patients, staff and visitors safe, stop the spread of Coronavirus (Covid-19), visiting restrictions are in place – please see click here for the latest information

17th June 2020

RITA brought in to help out on the ward

A new digital therapy system called RITA, which stands for ‘Reminiscence Interactive Therapy Activities’ has been purchased by MacDonald Ward at Conquest Hospital, following successful fund raising activities on the ward.

Sister Elizabeth Grant, Health Care Assistant Tracey Grant, MacDonald Matron Mark Chamberlain, Alison Tucker, Associate Practitioner with the Dementia Care Team, Patient Derek Bennett.

Sister Elizabeth Grant, Health Care Assistant Tracey Grant, MacDonald Matron Mark Chamberlain, Alison Tucker, Associate Practitioner with the Dementia Care Team, Patient Derek Bennett.

RITA is an innovative, evidence-based, state-of-the-art digital therapy system which allows patients to use apps, games and other leisure activities as part of their hospital recovery. It has an interactive touch screen system which allows patients to enjoy relaxation music, watch archive news footage, view old photographs and listen to famous speeches, to help spark memories and start conversations on the ward.

The system can also be personalised with bespoke images and content in order to create a ‘life story’ collage, which is of particular help to patients with dementia.

Mark Chamberlain, Matron on MacDonald Ward said: “I would like to thank everyone for their efforts in helping us in our fundraising activities for this innovative piece of equipment. RITA is great for our dementia patients but also for those with short-term memory issues. Patients have been using the reminiscence apps, as well as other well used activities on the system including bingo, quizzes, jigsaws and we have even been having karaoke sessions. Overall we are delighted that RITA has joined the team.”

Alison Tucker, Associate Practitioner with the Dementia Care Team said: “The Dementia Care Team is extremely proud and grateful for all the hard work and passion MacDonald Ward have put into raising the funds for this system affectionately known as ‘RITA’. It has been used since the day of delivery via a large patient-friendly screen or the smaller tablet, and both can be used at the bedside or for groups. This is primarily for supporting our patients with a dementia, disorientation and confusion, but can be used with any of our patients to promote engagement and inclusion, and reduce agitation, isolation and depression.”

Each unit costs £6,745 and consists of a 22 inch main display system along with a 10 inch mobile tablet.

MacDonald Ward raised funds with donations from Nigel and Stuart Clements, Battle Muffin Club, Hastings Muffin Club, Hastings Rotary Club, Rotary Club of Rye and Winchelsea, Rotary Club of St Leonards-on-Sea together with raffles and cakes sales on the ward.