HSE launches Memory Technology Resource Rooms for people with memory difficulties – see www.understandtogether.ie
The HSE recently launched the National Network of Memory Technology Resource Rooms at St. Columcille’s Hospital, Loughlinstown. These rooms are designed to showcase a wide variety of ‘assistive technologies’ and supports for people with memory difficulties, including dementia, and their families. To date, 17 Memory Technology Resource Rooms (MTRRs) have opened across the country with 6 more to open by the end of 2018. The service was launched by Minister for Health Simon Harris TD, and was attended by health service staff from Loughlinstown and the other Memory Technology Resource Rooms across the country, and individuals and families who have previously visited the MTRR and found new ways to manage their day-to-day challenges.
Assistive Technology (AT) refers to equipment that enables someone to complete a task to maintain their independence. It can help manage risks at home and can reduce stress for carers. AT includes safety equipment, prompts and reminders, sensory technology, communication and orientation devices. Typical equipment on display in the MTRR includes push button reminders with voice recordings, easy to use remote controls, easy to use radios and phones, prompts to take medication, speaking clocks and watches, orientating devices, wall planners and lots more. In most cases, very simple and inexpensive solutions enable people with memory difficulties to do things by themselves for as long as possible. Quality of life ideas such as a life history book, talking photo album or a personalised memory box can also make a difference to people living with dementia and memory difficulties. The MTRRs have examples of these items and advice on how to put them together.
Supporting people with memory difficulties to maintain their independence, enabling them to continue doing what it important to them has a hugely positive impact on their quality of life. People with memory difficulties, including dementia, and their family members can arrange to visit their local Memory Technology Resource Room free of charge. You can speak to your GP or Public Health Nurse, or make an appointment directly with your local MTRR.
More details of your local MTRR and a video showcasing their work can be found on the Understandtogether website at Memory Technology Resource Room