July 2, 2008

Hosptial AIDS Recovery With Quiet Mealtimes

PATIENTS are being given the chance to eat their meals in peace in a bid to boost their health.

James Cook University Hospital has launched a protected meal times scheme banning unnecessary interruptions at mealtimes.

Research has shown that people who are disturbed during meal times can have reduced appetites, which can affect well-being and recovery times.

Patients on acute medicine wards are now enjoying their food in private with no disturbances from doctors' rounds or routine tests, and visitors are asked not to come during mealtimes.

The Middlesbrough hospital has also introduced a second project based on Age Concern's Hungry to be Heard Campaign, which aims to reduce the risk of malnutrition in older people.

Red serviettes are placed on the trays of patients who need help to eat or drink and their meals are taken to them by a member of staff who can provide support.

Ward manager Tracy Warne said: "It is a great example of staff working together to improve the service for patients."

The acute medicine wards at the Friarage Hospital in Northallerton also have protected mealtimes.

(c) 2008 Evening Gazette - Middlesbrough. Provided by ProQuest Information and Learning. All rights Reserved.