As is we need another statistic to confirm the extensive problems facing nursing home patients, here’s some more fuel to add to the fire– 35% to 85% of nursing home patients suffer from malnourishment according to a study published in Commonwealth Fund.
In response to this epidemic, an international group of nutrition experts has released new definitions to help medical professionals better equip themselves to identify and treat malnutrition.
- Chronic disease-related
- Acute disease / injury-related.
The new guidelines were assembled in conjunction with input from the ESPEN (the European Society for Clinical Nutrition and Metabolism) and the American Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition (ASPEN). The new definitions are being dually published in the journals Clinical Nutrition and JPEN, the official journals of ESPEN and ASPEN.
As a nursing home lawyer, I tend to see many cases involving the development of decubitus ulcers, urinary tract infections and other chronic medical problems trace their origins to situations involving malnutrition and dehydration over an extended period at a nursing home.
Consequently, when evaluating most nursing home negligence cases, I always address the nutrition assessments in conjunction with nurses notes to see if there is a potential malnutrition component to the case as well.
Related Nursing Homes Abuse Blog Entries: