|Title||Dutch nutrition and care professionals' experiences with undernutrition awareness, monitoring, and treatment among community-dwelling older adults: a qualitative study|
|Author(s)||Ziylan, C.; Haveman-Nies, A.; Dongen, E.J.I. van; Kremer, S.; Groot, C.P.G.M. de|
|Source||BMC Nutrition 1 (2015). - ISSN 2055-0928 - 11 p.|
FBR Consumer Science & Health
Chair Nutrition and Health over the Lifecourse
|Publication type||Refereed Article in a scientific journal|
Undernutrition can negatively affect community-dwelling older adults’ health and quality of life. Undernutrition management guidelines have been developed in the Netherlands for the primary care setting, however, the application of these guidelines remain unsatisfactory. The current study therefore aims to explore qualitatively the experiences of Dutch nutrition and care professionals and researchers with undernutrition awareness, monitoring, and treatment among community-dwelling older adults.
We telephonically interviewed 22 Dutch nutrition and care professionals and researchers. Our semi-structured interview guide elicited answers that we audiotaped and transcribed verbatim. The interviews were coded using grounded theory and content analysis with the qualitative analysis software MAXQDA, after which the codes were categorized into themes.
The interviews resulted in six themes relevant to the topics of interest: undernutrition awareness, monitoring, and treatment. These were: (1) adverse changes in nutrition behaviour; (2) limited undernutrition awareness; (3) unclear monitoring responsibilities and procedures; (4) lack of awareness, time, and priority as monitoring barriers; (5) lack of treatment personalization and justification; (6) lack of timely treatment implementation and evaluation.
The experts’ experiences imply that undernutrition awareness is limited, among both older adults and care professionals. In addition, the interviewees are unclear about which professionals are responsible for monitoring and which monitoring procedures are preferred. The dietitians feel that they become involved too late, leading to decreased treatment effectiveness. In general, the interviewees desire a coherent and feasible allocation of responsibilities regarding undernutrition monitoring and treatment. This implies that the available guidelines on undernutrition management require more attention and facilitation.