A NEW set of guidelines has been launched to ensure patients get the best nutrition possible during their time at Bradford Teaching Hospitals.
The Trusts's nutrition policy for adults pulls together existing guidelines and current best practice to cover all aspects of feeding.
Dietetic services manager, Jane Murphy, said: "The policy encompasses all issues related to nutrition from normal eating to feeding into a vein.
"The key aims of the guidelines are to raise awareness of nutrition and promote the use of nutrition screening tool so that we can identify which patients are at risk from becoming malnourished and provide appropriate treatment."
A nutrition steering group was set up to co-ordinate the development of good practice and provision of appropriate nutrition for all inpatients.
The policy features eight standards for good nutrition:
- oral supplements
- enteral feeding (feeding through a tube)
- parenteral feeding (into a vein)
- hospital staff
Protected meal times for older people, as reporte in the last edition of Trust Today, is one of many initiatives set up to ensure better nutrition for hospital patients.
The guidelines have been made available to all ward and clinical areas. Jane continued: "Now that the policy has been finalised and distributed to staff we are looking at how we can raise awareness of the importance of good nutrition for all patients.
"For example the food standard includes practical information on helping patients to meet their nutritional needs through assistance with eating and drinking to optimise intakes and reduce levels of food waste.
"It will become an important element in ongoing training and development and we will also be including it into induction programmes so that from day one staff can learn the importance of patient nutrition."
A set of nutritional guidelines for children is currently being developed to complement the adult programme, led by paediatric services manager Jym Bates.
For more information, please call Jane Murphy on ext. 5512 or Helen Andrews on ext. 5146.