Ward Nurses

Are the crucial “final common pathway” of nearly all patient-centred, ward-based care. For Nutrition they should adhere to standards set by Hospital Nutrition Steering Committee which may be adapted locally by Specialist Unit governance. They work in close co-operation with the patient’s principal medical team and the nutrition support team. Together with them they:

  1. Maintain an ongoing policy towards the nutritional support of patients which has continuity in the context of staff turnover.
  2. Employ routine nutritional screening including assessment of nutritional risk and the ability of the patient to eat.
  3. Maximise use of available facilities and options to achieve enjoyable, psychosocially beneficial, nutritionally effective meals and food intake.
  4. Take responsibility for individual patient’s food intake and co-ordinate a protected mealtimes policy at ward level.
  5. Help with food choices
  6. Help with feeding as appropriate
  7. Monitor/keep records of food intake when necessary
  8. Are alert to unsafe feeding
  9. Provide food, and in conjunction with dietitians, supply artificial nutritional supplements
  10. Provide expert safe delivery and monitoring of artificial nutritional support.
  11. Deliver enteral and parenteral nutrition skillfully, closely following hospital protocols and guidance
  12. Monitor enteral and parenteral nutrition – fluid balance, blood/urine glucose, diabetic charts, microbiology
  13. Prevent (cross) infection.
  14. Liaise with patient and patient’s relatives
  15. Employ timely discharge planning and liaise  with the community.
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