A Bognor Regis care home has received a prestigious award for its approach to resident's nutrition.
Elizabeth House care home, in Victoria Drive were awarded a gold certificate after taking part in a nutrition programme, Nutrition Resources in Care Homes (NRICH).
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Home manager Marian Drake said: "We are delighted with the positive feedback and have already begun work on the ongoing recommendation provided by the report. We recently purchased a smoothie maker and will soon have another which will enable us to make more nourishing drinks, especially high risk residents.
"The gold accolade is testament to the hard work of the staff at Elizabeth House and their commitment to ensuring that our residents are provided with the very best care, which includes meals that are nutritious and suited to their individual needs."
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The NRICH programme aims to ensure care home residents are supported to maintain a health diet. Run by West Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, the programme also teaches staff to identify and tackle malnutrition.
Ahead of its participation, each of the home’s individual care plans for its residents were audited with a focus on screening for malnutrition using the malnutrition universal screening tool (MUST). In addition, staff were encouraged to adopt a ‘food first’ approach - ensuring that malnutrition could be treated as quickly as possible - as well as learning of the importance of a pleasant and supportive mealtime environment and the appropriate prescribing of oral nutritional supplements.
Keaton Irvine, specialist community dietitian at Western Sussex Hospitals, said: “Supporting the staff at Elizabeth House has been very rewarding and they were a pleasure to work with throughout the NRICH process.
“At Western Sussex Hospitals we are committed to working with others to improve malnutrition training and to help prevent unnecessary hospital admissions or referrals.
“We hope that our NRICH programme will become a new gold standard that many more care homes engage with to help improve nutritional care for residents.”