High calories on the menu in new health scheme

Food Safety Impact

High calorie food and drink is being put on the menu in nursing homes to help residents combat nutrition.

The scheme, which is being led by Abertawe Bro Morgannwg University (ABMU) Board, is being rolled out across Swansea and Bridgend following a successful pilot in three homes in Neath Port Talbot.

ABMU community dietitian for nursing homes, Jo Betty, is leading a team of three dietetic assistant practitioners (DAPs) on the project.

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Jo said: “Many residents prefer normal food to supplements. They’re more likely to eat half a scone than they are to sit there with a drink they’re not fussed on and are likely to waste.

“We are already saving around £100 a day by reducing supplements just in the homes we have reached so far.”

When they first go into a home, the DAPs review medication charts to see how many residents have food supplements – then provide alternatives where appropriate.

Swn Y Mor Care Centre at Aberavon Beach was one of the first to get involved, working with DAP Rhian Wilyeo.

Manager Sharon Williams said: “We were using a lot of supplements which people won’t drink because they don’t find them very tasty.

“We were actually wasting them. Now using a fortified diet has improved their dietary intake.

“We’ve had training, we’ve had definite steps to go through. But if that fails we now have direct access to the dietetics team.

“We no longer have to wait for a GP referral, which can cause delays.”

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