Published on: 9 September 2020

New music players are set to be a big hit on South Tyneside and Sunderland hospital wards caring for older people.

The 10, easy-to-use MP3 music players were bought with £1,000 from Health Education England’s (HEE) Library Development Fund. They are expected to be of particular benefit for older patients. Music is pre-loaded to the individual’s taste and the volume can be set so it cannot be accidentally changed.

Paul Young, Deputy Charge Nurse at Sunderland Royal Hospital, said: “We’re very grateful to HEE for their donation. Listening to music is something everyone can enjoy but it is also a powerful way of connecting to our emotional memories from the past and, for people with dementia in particular, rekindling such memories can be very beneficial, boosting mood and reducing agitation and anxiety.”

South Tyneside and Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust’s Head of Library Services Catherine Fisher, who successfully applied for the HEE grant, said: “Paul was telling me about the challenges of keeping our older patients at Sunderland Royal Hospital and South Tyneside District Hospital happy and entertained. It occurred to us that they could derive a lot of pleasure and benefit from simple equipment like the MP3 music players and we’re delighted that HEE have supported the idea.”