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Research Findings: The Importance of Food and Nutrition in Aged Care

Headshot of Dr. Luliano

Medirest was proud to be a Gold Sponsor at Australian Healthcare Week in Sydney this year. We had the opportunity to chair the healthcare conference and deliver a keynote speech in the aged care conference. It was a great opportunity to connect with the industry and discuss key topics and challenges we all face.

Executive Director, Jeannine Biviano, in partnership with Dr. Sandra Iuliano presented new evidence to suggest a direct correlation between increased nutrition and clinical benefits to our residents in aged care facilities. Research indicates that these clinical care benefits save providers, and the healthcare sector, in the management and reduction of clinical care costs. Meaning there are cost savings to be made with simple changes to menus. This can and should include an increase in spend on nutritionally considered foods.

Dr. Sandra’s research comes at a critical time in the industry. The Royal Commission has released it’s findings, of which food and nutrition played a key part. It is known in the industry that malnutrition in our ageing population is a serious issue. For a number of reasons, which can include insufficient budget allocation to food spend, lack of technology to support proper nutrition management, education of staff, and resource availability to support at risk elderly.

In her findings, Dr. Sandra successfully links nutritional intervention with a reduction in physical and medical incidents in ageing populations. As an example, we can look at fractures in Aged Care Residents. Comparing a control group who received no adjustment to their nutritional program with the nutritional intervention group, studies showed a 46% reduction in the probability of hip fractures over 25 months. She then studies the estimated cost per resident for a year following a fall. Which demonstrates the correlation between nutritional care and clinical costs.

You can watch the full recorded speech in our video below.

Headshot of Dr. Luliano

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