Hospital among best at caring for disabled and dementia patients

The hospital has been rated highly in its care for people with disabilities and dementia.

The hospital has been rated highly in its care for people with disabilities and dementia. - Credit: Archant

Disabled patients in the care of Weston Area Health NHS Trust (WAHT) are among the best accommodated in the country, according to new figures.

WAHT scored 89 per cent in patient-led evaluations - known as PLACE assessments - for offering a disability-friendly environment.

The trust's scores were well above the national average, which was 82.5 per cent.

PLACE assessments are carried out annually in a bid to improve the quality of patient environments in NHS hospitals and hospices.

They involve volunteers going into hospitals to rate the non-clinical elements of care, such as catering services and waiting facilities.

Areas including cleanliness, patient privacy and the quality of food are reviewed, alongside the way sites support people with dementia and disabilities.

A trust spokesman said: "Everyone at the trust is extremely proud of these results which are a reflection of the hard work and dedication of our staff.

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"Cleanliness, food, kindness and care are some of the things people who come to hospital are most concerned about and we do all that we can to ensure we meet and, where possible, exceed expectations; especially for our most vulnerable patients, such as those with dementia or a disability."

The trust was rated 98.8 per cent for cleanliness, 95.9 per cent for condition, appearance and maintenance and 92.4 per cent for food.

It also scored 87.1 per cent for being dementia-friendly.

NHS data shows more than a third of trusts are not meeting the national average for disability, while just under 30 per cent are falling below it.

Emma Bould, from the Alzheimer's Society, said: "We know that staying in hospital can often be a stressful experience, especially for a person with dementia who may be more easily disorientated or confused.

"By listening to patients and making dementia-friendly adaptions to a hospital setting, hospitals can be transformed into safe spaces that will give people a sense of independence and reduce anxiety."

More: New name announced for merging NHS trusts.

University Hospitals Bristol Foundation Trust is set to merge with WAHT on April 1.

The newly formed trust will be called University Hospitals Bristol and Weston NHS Foundation Trust.