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A study to assess whether nutrition screen and treat policies for primary care are effective among an at risk free living older population. The study will determine whether nutritional intervention following screening for nutritional risk in older adults is practical, acceptable and cost-effective. 


About 10-15% of people over the age of 65 living at home are at risk of malnutrition. In particular, poor appetite is an important risk factor for malnutrition and for weight loss, and a risk factor for the development of infections, hospital admissions and even longer term mortality. This may be because they are not getting enough to eat, or because they are not eating enough of the right food. 

An approach has been developed to help doctors and nurses in primary care to check if older adults who live at home are at risk of malnutrition. They can then offer support to those who need it. This ‘Eat well, feel well, stay well’ intervention, includes booklets and follow-up for older adults, and also support for health professionals. The support for health professionals includes guidance about when to see patients, and when to give oral nutritional supplements for those more severely at risk. This intervention was developed by looking at previous literature to find what helps or hinders older adults eating well, and what is likely to work best in general practice.

Outcomes assessed in the study will include the number of infections people get, change in eating patterns, weight and quality of life. These outcomes will be compared between people in the intervention and usual care groups. 


Study Design:

Phase III/IV, randomised controlled trial
Sponsor: University of Southampton

Ethical Approval: 

REC No: 19/NW/0415

Chief Investigator:

Professor Paul Little

Contact Details:

01865 617874