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INVOLVing pEople with cognitive impaiRment in decisions about their hospital nursing care (INVOLVER): a pilot study

Principal Investigator: Professor Jackie BridgesTeam members: Professor Jackie Bridges (Professor of Older People's Care, School of Health Sciences, University of Southampton), Dr Jo Hope (Lecturer, School of Health Sciences, University of Southampton), Dr Teresa Corbett (Lecturer, Solent University)Start: 1 January 2020Ends: 31 December 2022

Project Partners: University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust, Solent NHS Trust, Solent University, Centre for Implementation Science, University of Southampton

Lay summary

We want to help nurses look after their patients in hospital. We want to help them find out how each patient likes to do things like getting clean, going to the toilet, eating and drinking.

Some people have to go into hospital to get better. Sometimes, when they are in hospital, the nurses don’t ask them enough about the way they like to do things. For example, if they like a bath or a shower. Or if they need help going to the toilet. Or if they would like to walk about. Or what food or drink they like.

Not being asked about these things is not helpful. It might mean that people end up getting sicker and staying in hospital longer. Or they may go home needing more help from their family.

People with dementia, learning disabilities or stroke may not be asked these questions about what they like. Sometimes the nurses don’t know how to do this well. Sometimes they know how to do it but can’t do it. The reasons they can’t do it are not well understood.

We are a group of people who want to make this better. Some of us work at a university finding things out. Some of us are nurses. We want to include people with dementia, learning disabilities or stroke in our group. This will help us think about how to make things better.

We think we can help nurses by using ideas that have worked in other places. When people like us have an idea about how something can be made better, we try the idea out and see if it works.

An example of an idea we might try is a training day for nurses. A teacher in a classroom shows the nurses how to do something new. Then the nurses see if they can do the new thing when they go to work.

We will write down the story of what happens. The story gets printed in a magazine or a book. Or the story might get shared in meetings with other people or on the internet.

This is our plan to make an idea that will help nurses to help patients:

  1. Find and read the stories of ideas tried in other places that might be useful.

  2. Talk to patients, nurses and others to make an idea that we think will work.

  3. Talk to patients, nurses and others to see what they think about the idea.

When we’ve done this work, we will be ready to try this idea out. If it works, when people go into hospital, they will be asked about what they like. And the nurses will be helpful. And the care will be a little more like being at home.

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