This research project led to the development of clinical tools to guide acute-care practitioners in the nutritional care of frail elderly patients on medical and surgical wards. A national study on the prevalence of malnutrition involved over 1000 patients in 18 acute care hospitals across 8 provinces. A nutrition care pathway has been validated among patients, families and diverse health professionals, and communication tools have been developed and tested. The resulting nutrition care pathway and support materials will be the basis of a future implementation study among diverse acute care settings. Improved clinical practices from the implementation of the pathway will benefit patient outcomes and hospital outputs, especially for frail elderly Canadians.
CFN believes that caring for the frail elderly is a complex, Canada-wide issue that requires multi-faceted, national strategies and solutions, and our monthly webinars are one way we bring together talented people to focus on this goal.