Trust Food and Nutrition Event
On Friday 20 May 2011 dietitians at South London Healthcare NHS Trust held a trust wide Food and Nutrition event for all staff. The aim was to share and discuss areas of best practice and to hear from specialists, including patient representatives, to look at the way forward. The timing seems particularly appropriate given the recent media focus on nutritional care of the elderly in hospital.
The event was very well attended and included non-executive directors and the Chairman George Jenkins, who opened the day's programme to a packed room of hospital staff ranging from student nurses to therapists and doctors.
The Trust's key areas for achieving high standards are
- Protected mealtimes – avoiding ward and drug rounds during mealtimes
- Nutritional screening of all patients within 24 hours of admission
- Patients receiving support at mealtimes when needed
- Ensuring that patients receive adequate fluids
Angela Gibb, Head of Dietetics says "Patient nutrition is key to recovery and we must get it right. Vulnerable people for example, stroke, or patients with dementia need to be properly assessed to make sure they can take the food given to them. This is a critical aspect for such patients – they are at risk of choking. Some people may be surprised to know that it's speech and language therapists who help determine what a patient's swallowing abilities are."
The day was hailed a tremendous success by the Dietetic Dept and paves the way forward for more events to take place on the Trust's other sites bringing more staff together and finding more ways to achieve the best for patient nutrition.
Attendees were treated to a delicious lunch generously provided by sponsorship from Abbott Laboratories, Nestle Nutrition, Fresenius Kabi and Nutricia Advanced Medical Nutrition