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Volunteers needed for delirium prevention program

Dick Herberg, a Valley HELP volunteer, said the benefits of the program are two-fold. “Patients get someone to talk with, play games with and keep their mind occupied during their stay, but it’s also a very rewarding experience on my part.” Submitted photo

Hudson Hospital & Clinic is looking for more volunteers to work with patients who are at risk for developing delirium during their hospital stay. Delirium, which can develop in a matter of hours, is a sudden change in mental status or sudden onset of confusion. Delirium is more common among older people who are admitted to hospital.

Through the Hospital Elder Life Program, or HELP, volunteers sit and talk with patients, play games and do puzzles, offer magazines and adult coloring books, and help patients order lunch among other activities.

"It sounds simple," said Anna Mulfinger, the HealthPartners Delirium Prevention Project Manager, "but the volunteers' work has an important goal of stimulating patients' cognitive abilities through activities."

For more information on becoming a HELP volunteer at Hudson, contact Lara Frasier at lara.n.frasier@hudsonhospital.org or 715-531-6026.

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