A tailored automated nutrition screening tool for rapid identification of risk in acute-care hospital settings

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Abstract

Malnourishment is prevalent in hospitalized patients and associated with adverse medical outcomes. Thus, nutrition screening to identify high-risk patients is widespread. However, no single universal tool has been shown to be suitable for all hospital departments. To address this challenge, a novel, tailored, electronic tool for nutritional screening was developed and evaluated. The Rambam Automated Nutrition Computerized Screening tool efficiently screens all newly admitted patients and does not rely on self-reported height and weight estimates. Validation was carried out in medical wards (n = 94), and compared to the Malnutrition Universal Screening Tool, length of stay and an independent assessment by a professional dietician. Results from this research support the use of automated, flexible tools that instantaneously incorporate relevant available data from the electronic health record. Tools that are adaptable to meet the needs of individual hospital departments, can save valuable time and ensure full screening of all admitted patients.

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