Orientation clocks Royal United Hospital Bath

ContactTony Husband
AddressOlder People’s Unit, Royal United Hospital Bath, Combe Park, Bath, BA1 3NG

What is being done?

Orientation clocks Royal United Hospital BathLarge screen Day Night Orientation clocks are being used on the wards at Royal United Hospital Bath, providing a constant and reassuring source of information on time and place.

The clock is a large (27”) display screen that uses custom software to show the time of day in different formats through slowly changing screens. This includes:

  • Traditional clock face
  • Digital time , AM or PM , day of the week & date
  • Now it’s ( day of week) (time of day i.e. morning, afternoon, evening, night )

At regular intervals it also displays a customised screen to show the place name. For example “Royal United Hospital Bath” In addition to this there is a feature to display the current season by a slowly changing slide show of pictures to reflect the time of year for a set time of day (e.g. visiting times).

Research by the King’s Fund demonstrates that good design can help with the management of dementia. People with dementia are less likely to get confused or become distressed within an environment designed with their needs in mind. It is a government aim to encourage hospitals and care homes to create more dementia friendly environments by creating calming surroundings to help avoid confusion. Day and night clocks are recognised as being helpful.

What is new and different?

The Day Night Orientation clock has been developed with hospital staff for communal settings like hospital wards, day rooms, nursing homes etc. and is primarily aimed at reassuring people who are confused, out of their usual routine or who have dementia. The clock supports patient orientation in time and place i.e. knowing when it is and where they are. It is suitable for a people who have a range of cognitive abilities

What difference does this seem to be making?

  • Orientation clocks Royal United Hospital BathThe clock contributes to reassuring people who are confused and vulnerable and provides them with a reference for important context information.
  • The presentation of time information in different formats is comprehensive and helpful to people who have variable levels of cognition. Everyone including people with dementia can access it.
  • Large screen with large text creates more impact than standard size day/date clocks and is more visible to everyone within the environment
  • It identifies day and night which is beneficial in 24 hour environments like hospitals and nursing homes
  • The screen dims at night so it does not disturb sleep patterns but is still visible if needed
  • The screen assists staff by answering and reinforcing questions like where am I? What time is it? These are questions that are frequently and repeatedly asked.
  • The seasonal slideshows that show the current season are visual clues as to time of year, they also provide an enjoyable pictorial view of the outside that is often not available and can encourage conversation
  • Orientation information is automatically up to date, no staff input is needed (unlike more basic calendar signage boards)
  • The clock is also a very clear reference for staff who are dealing with paperwork that needs correct date and time information

The day night orientation clock is now available to purchase from www.afterthoughtsoftware.com

2 thoughts on “Orientation clocks Royal United Hospital Bath

    1. Rowan Post author

      Hi Martyn,

      Thanks for sharing this. I think the clock that you have created looks great.

      In case other visitors are interested would you be happy to explain which Digital Photo Frame you used and whether it was easy to set up?

      on behalf of the Dementia Partnerships

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