The COVID-19 pandemic has changed a lot of everyday habits for Canadians. But this ‘new normal’ has had an even larger impact on how hospitals provide care to some of our most vulnerable patients.
As COVID-19 locked-down Ottawa, Queensway Carleton Hospital took an innovative step in providing alternative care for some patients by renting out and retrofitting several floors of the nearby Fairfield Inn in Kanata.
Thanks to the dedication and passion of QCH staff, creative outlets were found to keep the residents healthy, in both mind and body. From art and nature, to exercise – they found ways to stimulate creativity, support independence, and create personal connections that reflect the care QCH is known for.
The most enjoyable activity we have introduced has been the Karaoke sing-along. It is beautiful to see patients sing and smile during this activity. Some of the patients who rarely speak, will happily sing. We have made some musical shakers for them, and at times they tap on a box to create a drum sound. Most patients actively follow the rhythms of the songs, and some patients are now making song requests. This program is thanks to YouTube sing-along created by the Dementia Society of Ottawa and Renfrew County.
“The music is me,” says Dora, 95 and happily singing. “It reminds me of my childhood when I could sing.”
“It brings back memories of summer camps on Golden Lake,” says Ross, 92.
If you look up the definition of ‘volunteer’, it simply states, “Freely offer to do something.” Although true, this doesn’t sufficiently capture those who volunteer. I’ve been a Volunteer Coordinator with the Dementia Society of Ottawa and Renfrew Cou
The statistics are alarming: one of the greatest risk factors for dying of COVID-19 is dementia. The reasons are many and potentially complex, but the need to prioritize the 24,000+ people diagnosed with dementia in Ottawa and Renfrew County and their