New app helps nurses assess patients' nutrition


The ‘Managing adult malnutrition in the community’ guide and pathway is now available online as an app. Since its launch in 2012, thousands of health professionals have downloaded the pathway to seek further information on the management of adult malnutrition in the community — this app aims to help them in their day-to-day assessment of patients.

The app incorporates the Malnutrition Universal Screening Tool (‘MUST’) tool developed by the British Association for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition (BAPEN) and enables nurses to work out whether patients are at low, medium or high malnutrition risk. It also gives advice on management according to risk-based evidence and shared best practice. 

‘We hope that healthcare professionals will find this a useful tool in everyday practice,’ says Anne Holdoway, registered dietitian and chair of the consensus panel that developed the Managing Adult Malnutrition in the Community document.  ‘We have tried to develop an app that is simple for professionals to use and which assists them in working through an appropriate care plan for patients including when oral nutritional supplements will be of greatest benefit.’

It is also hoped that the app will be of benefit to community nurses specifically.

‘Nurses are utilising new technology in their jobs on a day-to-day basis’ says Iain McGregor, vice chair of the RCN Older People’s Nursing Forum and member of the consensus panel.  ‘This app should prove very useful to them, particularly when visiting patients in their own homes or in nursing homes.’

The app is available free for healthcare professionals from the website.  The website contains an array of resources and background information including videos and patient leaflets to assist professionals dealing with patients at risk of malnutrition.

Picture: Steve Spinks

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