Compassionate Design: a methodology for advanced dementia
Lab4Living, Sheffield Hallam University
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Predicted increases in the numbers of people living into the advanced stages of dementia pose a significant problem for health and care providers around the world. Finding ways to ameliorate the distressing dementia symptoms of anxiety and depression and assist people to live well into the advanced stages of the disease, is vitally important. There are currently few products available for people living in the later stages and understanding the complex needs of individuals on a unique dementia journey, is vitally important for designers of products and services. This paper will propose that Compassionate Design provides an effective and tested methodology to help ensure that designs are appropriate and meaningful to users living with advanced dementia, or other forms of cognitive impairment as a result of accident or disease. The approach places loving kindness for the individual at the heart of the design process and focuses on three vital aspects of design: sensory stimulation, personalisation and connections with others and the environment. This paper provides a case study from LAUGH EMPOWERED, a collaboration with UK NHS and an international residential care home company. It evidences how Compassionate Design methodology has informed the development and evaluation of HUG by LAUGH®, a new product designed to bring comfort and reduce anxiety for people living with advanced dementia. HUG® is a soft soothing object that contains embedded technology that provides personalised music and a beating heart. The study is evaluating design, safety and effectiveness of HUG® to support the wellbeing of people living with advanced dementia. Data is collected via the Pool Activity Level (PAL) tool and Bradford Dementia Wellbeing Scale, as well as interviews with caregivers, health professionals and family members. Early findings from the study indicate that HUG® helps to reduce patient anxiety and enhances communication with caregivers.
Proceedings of the 6th European Conference on Design4Health;
Treadaway, C., Fennell, J. & Taylor, A. (2020) 'Compassionate Design: a methodology for advanced dementia', In Christer, K., Craig, C. & Chamberlain, P. Proceedings of the 6th International Conference on Design4Health. Amsterdam, Netherlands, 1st-3rd July 2020. Sheffield: Sheffield Hallam University, pp. 667-673
Conference paper published in Proceedings of the 6th International Conference on Design4Health available at https://research.shu.ac.uk/design4health/wp-content/uploads/2020/06/D4H-Proceedings-2020-Vol-4-Final.pdf
Cardiff Metropolitan University (Grant ID: Cardiff Metropolian (Internal))
Arts and Humanities Research Council (Grant reference AH/M005607/1), Welsh Government ERDF (Grant reference 2018/COL/012/80839)
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Treadaway, Cathy; Fennell, Jac (University of South Wales, 2016-09-14)This poster presents research that is investigating the development of playful objects for people living with advanced dementia. The Ludic Artifacts Using Gesture and Haptics (LAUGH) research is a three-year international ...
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