28 July 2017

Malnutrition 

 

Malnutrition leads to increased morbidity, longer hospital stays, decreased quality of life and higher costs. Large body of evidence demonstrates that if malnutrition is identified, it can be treatable, with appropriate nutritional intervention resulting in improved outcomes, reduced costs for care and improved Quality of Life (QoL). Despite that, around 40%, of patients admitted to hospitals and nursing homes are found to be malnourished and the state of malnutrition usually increases during their stay. Moreover, when focusing on specific patients’ groups, such as oncology or ICU patients, prevalence of malnutrition even increases.


Despite the high ranking of Greece concerning doctors to population ratio, nutritional care to hospitalized patients in Greece is not better than in other countries, with malnutrition prevalence rates reaching 40%. One main reason for this, especially in Greece, might be the low level of knowledge and the awareness of nutritional problems among caregivers. The GrESPEN , a multidisciplinary scientific society promoting the implementation of guidelines into clinical nutrition support, fully supports the idea that appropriate treating of malnutrition can avoid knock-on healthcare complications and inflated costs. Therefore, GrESPEN focused on incorporating needed changes in the Greek legislation to create policies in favour of the prevention of malnutrition. 

The Fight Against Malnutrition goes on, with more National Societies issuing official documents that play an important role in guiding the changes towards optimal nutritional patient care. To this aim, the Adriatic Club of Clinical Nutrition, recently announced an important Declaration in a recent meeting in Serbia (Belgrade Declaration), in an effort to promote fundamental clinical, educational and political issues in the region.

 

 


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