Early Intervention of Nutritional Care for Older Peoples Services

What was the issue you were addressing or working on?

Malnutrition can either be a cause or a consequence of disease. It can lead to worse health and clinical outcomes in all social and NHS care settings.  Malnutrition affects:

  • More than 1/3 people recently admitted to care homes.
  • 1/3 adults on admission to hospital.
  • 1/10 people attending their GP.

In most cases, malnutrition is a treatable condition that can be initially managed by first line dietary advice (food first) and oral nutritional supplements.


What you did?

Since November 2011, a total of approximately 1000 care at home staff have been trained.  Key partners include the 3 local authorities, independent care providers and unpaid carers.  The training consists of a 3 hour interactive workshop with the following learning outcomes:

  • Recognise the causes, risks, symptoms and consequences of malnutrition.
  • Competently deliver basics Food First using a selection of everyday foods to increase nutrient content.
  • Be more confident in putting early steps in place to improve diet/nutrition and wellbeing.
  • Be aware of the role of diet in the care of service users with common conditions e.g Diabetes and Dementia

What were the outcomes - benefits or otherwise?

Ongoing evaluation of the education programmes has highlighted at least an 80% increase in knowledge, skills and confidence in implementing nutritional care and first line advice.

The next steps are to assess impact on practice, expand the topics within the programme in the Care Home setting and explore sustainability for the future.



Contacts - to find out more

Elaine Jocelyn  Elaine.jocelyn@aapct.scot.nhs.uk   01563 575413