How Widely are Supportive and Flexible Food Service Systems and Mealtime Interventions Used for People in Residential Care Facilities? A Comparison of Dementia-Specific and Nonspecific Facilities

Rachel Milte, Clare Bradley, Michelle Miller, Olivia Farrer, Maria Crotty

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

While improved mealtime practices can reduce agitation, improve quality of life, and increase food intake for people in aged care, the degree of implementation of these strategies is unknown. This study describes food service practices in residential aged care facilities, focusing on units caring for people with dementia. An online survey was distributed to residential aged care facilities for completion by the food service manager (n = 2057). Of the 204 responses to the survey, 63 (31%) contained a dementia-specific unit. Most facilities used adaptive equipment (90.2%) and commercial oral nutritional supplements (87.3%). A higher proportion of facilities with a dementia-specific service used high-contrast plates (39.7%) than those without (18.4%). The majority of facilities had residents make their choice for the meal more than 24 h prior to the meal (30.9%). Use of high contrast plates (n = 51, 25%) and molds to reform texture-modified meals (n = 41, 20.1%) were used by one-quarter or less of surveyed facilities. There is a relatively low use of environmental and social strategies to promote food intake and wellbeing in residents, with a focus instead on clinical interventions. Research should focus on strategies to support implementation of interventions to improve the mealtime experience for residents.
Original languageEnglish
Article number140
Number of pages14
JournalHealthcare
Volume6
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 3 Dec 2018

Bibliographical note

This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/). ©2018 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.

Keywords

  • Aged care
  • Nursing homes
  • Dementia
  • Food
  • Food services

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'How Widely are Supportive and Flexible Food Service Systems and Mealtime Interventions Used for People in Residential Care Facilities? A Comparison of Dementia-Specific and Nonspecific Facilities'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this