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Press Release

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Title
Hospital raises awareness for nutrition and hydration
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Press release date07/03/2019
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Summary
Leicester’s Hospitals’ Nutrition and Dietetic Service are once again actively promoting and championing the importance of good nutrition and hydration for both staff and patients in the national awareness campaign, Nutrition and Hydration Week 2019
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Press release

The aim of the awareness week is to create a global movement to reinforce and focus energy, activity and engagement on nutrition and hydration as an important part of quality care in health and social care settings. 


Malnutrition is often under-recognised and under-treated to the detriment and cost to health care providers. Alarmingly more than 3 million people at any one time in the UK are malnourished; with around 30% of admissions to both acute hospitals and care homes are at risk when evaluated using the ‘Malnutrition Universal Screening Tool’ (‘MUST’). 


Ruth Boyce, a Senior Specialist Dietitian at Leicester’s Hospitals, said: “Nutritious food and fluid intake must at always be a priority for all.


“Both of these factors can have a phenomenal impact on patient wellbeing, treatment and clinical outcomes.


“As health professionals, we recognise it is everyone’s responsibility to ensure all have access to good nutrition and adequate hydration throughout their hospital stay. It is important to ensure our colleagues are equipped with the necessary knowledge and awareness to maintain a nutritionally balanced diet, to ensure they are fighting fit to care for your loved ones.


“During Nutrition and Hydration Week, individuals and organisations are being asked to pledge their support in raising awareness, something that we take very serious with the Trust.”


The team has organised a series of educational, interactive and fun activities throughout the week to encourage staff and patients to get involved.  Wards across the three hospital sites will be invited to promote nutrition through a different theme picked for each day, such as ‘Must Monday,’ ‘Feeding Tube Tuesday’ and ‘CPD Thursday’ and ‘Fortified Friday’. There will be videos from our dietitians and a chance to get involved on social media.   


Wednesday 13 March 2019 will see the extra important recognition of ‘Swallowing Awareness Day’, highlighting the new IDDSI (The International Dysphagia Diet Standardisation Initiative), which is the new NHS criteria for categorising different diet textures for people with swallowing difficulties.


Photographs, videos and updates about Nutrition and Hydration week will be posted on the Dietitian team’s Twitter account - @UHL_DIETITIANS.


For more information about Nutrition and Hydration week 2019, visit: www.nutritionandhydrationweek.co.uk  


You can find out about exciting events happening locally and nationally by following our Dieticians on Twitter: @UHL_DIETITIANS


*Dysphagia describes eating, drinking and swallowing difficulties in infants, children and adults. People with dysphagia often have other health conditions that they are being treated for which affects their eating, drinking and swallowing abilities.


Eating, drinking and swallowing difficulties have potentially life-threatening consequences. They can result in choking, pneumonia, chest infections, dehydration, malnutrition and weight loss. They can also make taking medication more difficult and they can lead to a poorer quality of life for the individual and their family.


Speech and language therapists offer support to those affected with dysphagia to eat, drink and swallow safely.


References: 

Brotherton, A., Simmonds, N., Stroud, M. (2010) Bapen, A Toolkit for Commissioners and Providers in England, Malnutrition Matters.  Accessed 14/2/17

http://www.bapen.org.uk/pdfs/toolkit-for-commissioners.pdf 

Contact information:
Contact information
For all hospital enquiries, including additional quotes, images and interviews, please contact:

Jake Toon
Communications Officer at University Hospitals of Leicester
jake.toon@uhl-tr.nhs.uk
0116 258 8715
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Press release number
6775
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