Nutrition and nursing specialists have devised a series of care plans to help nurses look after care home residents at risk of malnutrition.
The care plans were created by the National Nurses Nutrition Group (NNNG) in conjunction with the expert panel that drew up the Managing Adult Malnutrition in the Community guide and pathway.
“Malnutrition is a particular problem in care homes across the country”
The plans apply to patients in residential and care homes who are either at low, medium or high risk of malnutrition.
“Nurses’ role in ensuring these patients are being correctly assessed, treated and monitored is paramount,” said Liz Evans, nutrition nurse specialist and chair of the NNNG.
“Malnutrition is a particular problem in care homes across the country and we know from national surveys that more than one in three residents are at risk,” added dietician Anne Holdoway, chair of the panel that developed the Managing Adult Nutrition in the Community guide.
The guide is intended to assist community healthcare professionals in identifying and managing those at risk of disease-related malnutrition. It has been developed by a multi-professional team and is endorsed by the Royal College of Nursing and the NNNG.
Ms Holdoway said: “Community nurses play a very important role in screening and monitoring the progress of malnourished patients and in ensuring they are on an appropriate treatment plan.
“The care plans have been developed for use in residential and care homes but could also be used in other community settings,” she said.
The care plans are free to download.