Background: Malnutrition is a significant problem that can have serious consequences on the well-being of adults. Malnourished adults have increased hospitalisations and increased health complications. Thus, malnutrition can lead to increased healthcare costs and poor quality of life. In primary healthcare the prevalence of malnutrition ranges from 40%-90%. Although this is a serious and extensive problem, literature shows that malnutrition in the adult population is poorly recognised by healthcare professionals in primary healthcare.
The early identification and observation of nutritional-related problems using structured and standardised documentation can potentially prevent the poor outcomes that are associated with malnutrition in primary health care. There are several ways to provide structure to nursing data and the Nursing Minimum Datasets (NMDS) are one of the most notable structured documentation systems within nursing care, although being rarely used due to lack of transferring the evidence to usable knowledge.
Objectives: Development of a Nursing Minimum Data Set (NMDS) within the nutritional area in primary health care and the translation of this evidence into practice.
Methods: The NMDS developed in this study consists of elements from both validated nutritional screening tools and the clinicians- and patient perspective. The results of the comprehensive systematic literature search are published in a scoping review.
The items identified in the scoping review needs to be translated into practice in order to accommodate the information needs of the target audience as well as using an understandable terminology (clinical language). A participatory workshop using affinity diagramming was utilised. Participants in the workshop consisted of future consumers of the NMDS (nurses, dieticians) and management (nursing leaders). Affinity diagramming is a simple and cost-effective technique for soliciting ideas from a group and obtaining consensus on how information should be structured.
Results: This study is ongoing. Both the process of transferring a NMDS into practice and the results will be presented at the Summit.