A Student Nutrition Service for Peripheral Arterial Disease Patients

Photo from the 2016 pilot study: Left to Right: Matilda Smale (BND4), Jenni Suen (APD), Yin Shi Chan (MND2)


With promising results from a pilot study conducted in 2016, a Student Nutrition Service for Peripheral Arterial Disease (PAD) Patients has been formed and supported by Jenni Suen’s PhD project. The project aims to test whether the service is associated with prolonging the progression of vascular disease in patients and the development of DAA competencies in student who voluntarily participate.

Patients with PAD who attend the Southern Adelaide Local Health Network Vascular Outpatient Clinics are invited to participate in this project which is provided as a 12 week randomised controlled trial. Those randomised to intervention are provided with an individualised education appointment and six-week review appointment by a final year dietetics student. Additionally patients are invited to attend a six fortnightly education and cooking skills program at a community centre. When not attending the sessions at the community centre, individualised encouraging messages are provided.

All students studying Nutrition and Dietetics at Flinders University may choose to participate. After each patient interaction, students are encourage to reflection upon their experience verbally to their supervisor and also in written form. The supervisor then provides non-assessed verbal and written feedback on the dietetic competencies to assist the student to self identify learning goals.

The service began on February 19th and since has serviced 20 patients and 6 students. The clinic is projected to finish in November this year to enable data analysis and follow up data collection to occur in 2019.

Anyone interested in finding out more about this project is encouraged to contact Jenni Suen through jenni.suen@flinders.edu.au.

This trial has been registered under the following number ACTRN12618000146291.

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