A multidisciplinary team from Flinders University, led by Professor Michelle Miller from Nutrition and Dietetics, has recently completed a project for NSW Health, won following a competitive tender process. The team consisted of Dr Alison Yaxley (Nutrition and Dietetics), Associate Professor Diane Chamberlain (Nursing), Dr Sebastian Doeltgen (Speech Pathology), Professor Anthony Maeder (Digital Health Systems) and Dr Yogesh Sharma (Medicine), and the Project Manager was Mrs Reegan Knowles.
The project aimed to reach consensus on indicators of nutritional risk for development of a systems based approach to improve adult inpatient health outcomes, following consultation with key stakeholders and other national and international experts, and has resulted in the development of a draft paper based system for testing in the field. It is envisaged that, after testing, the system will be further refined with a view to translation to a digital format which will auto populate from existing medical and health software platforms. This system should not be viewed as another malnutrition screening tool and the team believes that the digital system will enable appropriate triage of patients by level of nutritional risk and thus maximise workforce participation in nutritional care of patients.