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Innovative dementia project in line for another national award

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An innovative project to help dementia sufferers in the borough has been shortlisted for another national award.

Dudley Council’s Project Rita (Reminiscent Interactive Therapy Assistant) will either win bronze, silver or gold in the IESE Public Sector Transformation Awards to be announced in September.

The £75,000 scheme gives dementia sufferers access to a tablet and the Rita system, which uses sound and vision to stimulate people’s thoughts and ideas.

The tablets and system are being used in residential and nursing homes across the borough and at the borough’s two dementia gateways – Queens Cross in Dudley and Brett Young in Halesowen.

The project made it to the last three from hundreds of submissions across the country, and comes hot on the heels of last year when it was nominated for Best Service Delivery Model and Digital Impact at the LGC Awards.

Dudley Council is also the only local authority in the region to make the prestigious Laing and Buisson Awards in April for its response to Covid 19.

Councillor Nicolas Barlow, cabinet member for health and adult social care, said:

I am delighted this ground-breaking project has received national recognition.
Through the tablets people are able to listen and watch all of their old favourites to evoke happy memories, which has a huge impact on the wellbeing and behaviour of people suffering with dementia.
Early evaluations suggest it has helped with reductions in falls and hospital admissions along with a number of other positive impacts.
I’d like to thank everyone in the team who has worked so hard to make it a reality.
I could not be more proud of the adult social care team at the moment. Their hard work is being recognised through regular shortlistings for major national awards.
A recent survey of residents in the borough saw services for vulnerable people ranked as top priority, and we recognise that.
Our prevention services are recognised as the best in class and as a council we will invest £8m next year, and £12m over the next three years, to build towards continued future successes and help the post Covid recovery.

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