BACKGROUND: Good nutritional practice (GNP) includes screening, nutrition plan and monitoring, and is mandatory for targeted treatment of malnourished patients in hospital.
AIMS: To optimize energy- and protein-intake in patients at nutritional risk and to improve GNP in a hospital setting.
METHODS: A 12-months observational multi-modal intervention study was done, using the top-down and bottom-up principle. All hospitalized patients (>3 days) were included. Setting: A university hospital with 758 beds and all specialities. Measurements: Record audit of GNP, energy- and protein-intake by 24-h recall, patient interviews and staff questionnaire before and after the intervention. Interventions: Based on pre-measurements, nutrition support teams in each department made targeted action plans, supervised by an expert team. Education, diagnose-specific nutrition plans, improved menus and eating environment, and awareness were initiated. Statistics: Mann-Whitney and Kruskal-Wallis test was used for ordinal data, and Pearson Chi square test for nominative data.
RESULTS: Overall 545 patients participated (287 before/258 after) from 26/22 departments. There were no significant differences regarding sex, age, BMI or previous weight loss before and after the intervention. Result-indicators: Energy intake improved from 52% to 68% (p < 0.007), and protein intake from 33% to 52% (p < 0.001) (>75% of requirements). Intake of less than 50% of requirements decreased with 50%. Process-indicators: Screening improved from 56% to 77% (p < 0.001), nutrition plans from 21% to 56% (p < 0.0001), and monitoring food intake from 29% to 58% (p < 0.0001).
CONCLUSIONS: Intake of energy and protein as well as GNP improved using a multi-modal top-down and bottom-up approach.