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Patient Association report into malnutrition

Published on 22 August 2011 04:30 PM

Michelle Mitchell, Charity Director of Age UK said:

'Every patient should be properly fed and treated with dignity whether in hospital or in the community. These are the essential elements of care. It is equally important that people at risk of malnutrition living in the community are identified early and supported. The Patient's Association's report highlights the many missed opportunities to intervene when someone is under-weight or otherwise malnourished, not just in hospital but when, for example, a person sees their GP.

'The report further highlights the need to improve awareness of malnutrition in older people. It is important to challenge assumptions such as saying people simply have a reduced appetite in later life.

'Age UK's Hungry to be Heard campaign called last year for the CQC to undertake a comprehensive review of hospital mealtimes. The subsequent spot checks are a positive step in highlighting the issues in this area. However, even though we know that hospital staff's recognition of the issue is high, much more still needs to be done to ensure that words are transferring into action on wards.

'The Hungry to be Heard campaign wants hospitals data on malnutrition rates to be published and monitored in a consistent way and for hospital wards to effectively implement Age UK's seven recommended steps*. Measures to ensure that older patients' treatment is consistent from hospital to hospital and ward to ward must also be taken, ensuring that all staff treat all patients appropriately at all times.'

- ENDS -

Ref: IWMMTGMM

Notes to editors

Age UK
For media enquiries relating to Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland please contact the appropriate national office: Age Scotland on 0131 668 8055, Age Cymru on 029 2043 1562 and Age NI on 028 9024 5729.

Age UK is the new force combining Age Concern and Help the Aged, dedicated to improving later life.

We provide free information, advice and support to over five million people; commercial products and services to over one million customers; and research and campaign on the issues that matter to people in later life. Our work focuses on five key areas: money matters, health and well being, home and care, work and training and leisure and lifestyle. We work with our national partners, Age Scotland, Age Cymru and Age NI (together the Age UK Family), our local Age UK partners in England and local Age Concerns. We also work internationally for people in later life as a member of the DEC and with our sister charity Help Age International.

Age UK is a charitable company limited by guarantee and registered in England (registered charity number 1128267 and company number 6825798). Age Concern England and Help the Aged (both registered charities), and their trading and other associated companies merged on the 1st April 2009. Together they have formed the Age UK Group ("we").  Charitable services are offered through Age UK and commercial products are offered by the Charity's trading companies, which donate their net profits to Age UK (the Charity).  

Media contact: Ashley Cox
Tel: 020 3033 1429
Out of hours: 07071 243 243

Last updated: Oct 06 2017

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