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Issue:- Monday, 16 May 2016

Headlines and reports on this page = 3 news items.    Page - 7.

Art provides creative relief for patients at the Royal

DEMENTIA  and stroke patients at the Royal Liverpool University Hospital have been given the opportunity to create their own works of art as part of a creative art programme. The 6 week project called:- 'Making a Difference' is part of a partnership between the Royal and The Bluecoat Display Centre.  Funded through the Arts Council's:- 'Grants for the Arts' programme and other charitable foundations, the project focuses on providing dementia and some stroke patients with a stimulating activity to concentrate on for a short period while being treated in hospital.

Rachael Howard, the artist commissioned to take part in the project, wanted patients to focus on their art rather than the time they were spending in hospital. Rachael said:- "It's something to take a patient's mind off their hospital visit. We want the work they do to empower them with a small project they can be proud of. What we have seen is patients become engrossed in the work they're doing. It has been lovely to see the joy on their faces and the interaction their art has encouraged between patients, relatives and staff."

Maureen Bampton, director of the Bluecoat Display Centre, said:- "The project was designed to be an immersive experience between patients and carefully selected leading contemporary craft makers, who appeared to really benefit from the contact and exploration seen within the residencies."

After finishing their artwork, patients are given a copy of their art to display proudly on their ward. Originals will be used as part of a collaborative exhibition to be displayed alongside the Rachael's own work in the Royal at a special event, on Wednesday, 18 May 2016.

Shaun Lever, dementia practitioner for the Trust said:- "Giving dementia patients stimulating activities during their stay in hospital is a real benefit to the patient. Taking some time to concentrate on their own artwork gives patients the opportunity to express themselves in a different way. Patients have responded well to taking part in the project and it has been a great experience for everyone involved. Even spending some time with Rachael and talking about their art can help a patient in their rehabilitation."

Clinical trials specialists ready to answer your questions

POTENTIAL research volunteers are being encouraged to find out how they can contribute to developing life saving treatments. Clinical Research Specialists from the Royal Liverpool University Hospital will be answering questions on clinical trials during a special Twitter chat, from 2pm to 4pm, on 20 May 2016. If you can't join the Twitter chat on the day, tweet your question in advance by using:- #AskTheExpert or @RoyalLpoolHosps. The online question and answer session is being run as part of International Clinical Trials Day, which aims to promote Clinical Trials and thank volunteers who have already taken part.

Louise Markinson, senior early phase trials scientific co-ordinator, will be leading the Twitter chat. She said:- "By volunteering for a health study, you are helping to develop and shape the future of healthcare. We want to thank the volunteers who have given up their time to help others and encourage more people to take part. Clinical Trials are essential in helping us move forward and develop lifesaving treatments and technologies for a wide range of conditions. Many of the common treatments that we are all familiar with today will have been as a result of a Clinical Trial. The NHS Constitution cites clinical research as a core part of the NHS, enabling the NHS to improve the current and future health of the population."

The clinical research team will also be manning information stands in the Royal's foyer, from 10am to 3pm.

The clinical research unit at the Royal recently became the 1st NHS facility in England to be able to carry out Clinical Trials, where new drugs are administered to humans for the 1st time, as part of tightly controlled research projects in 2013. To find out more about Clinical Research you can always ask the person treating you if you can get involved in research. You can also ask your GP, consultant, surgeon, nurse or therapist, or visit the Clinical Research website.

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