Commissioning care homes: common safeguarding challenges

Common safeguarding issues – Poor nutritional care

Poor nutritional care in care homes and hospitals has been frequently highlighted in recent years. This led to a host of reports and guidance to support improvements in the health and social care sectors. As part of the Joint Action Plan: Improving nutritional care (DH, 2007), SCIE has produced a comprehensive guide on this issue.

Food is the 'highlight of the day' for many people in care homes and a measure of the overall quality of the service. Between 19 and 30 per cent of all people admitted to hospitals, care homes or mental health units are at risk of malnutrition (BAPEN 2007). The consequences of malnutrition and dehydration can be very costly both for the individual, in terms of their health and wellbeing, and for services as people may become ill and require more intervention for longer.

Prevention checklist