Sub-acute Point-of-Service Nutrition Screening Audit

Ms Helen Stratmann1, Ms Renee Gleeson1, Ms Kathy Wheatland1

1Nutrition and Dietetics , Peninsula Health, Frankston, Australia



1)Determine percentage of Malnutrition Screening Tools (MST’s)correctly completed by Sub-acute Nursing Staff

2)Determine percentage of patients diagnosed with malnutrition/patients with Stage 2 or greater pressure injuries (PI’s)/ non-healing wounds referred to Dietetics


Two trained Monash Vocational Placement Dietetics Students collected data on Sub-acute Wards using purpose-designed paper-based forms. Students referred to nursing admission documents /wound charts , completed subjective global assessments where indicated.

Audit period was 6th – 17th November 2017. Data was entered onto an Excel 2010 spreadsheet and statistical analysis was performed using percentages


Correct MST completion ranged from 35% to 60% per ward. Golflinks Rd Two had the highest completion rate and Sorrento Ward the lowest. Correct completion rates were increased compared to a 2012 audit (range 0%- 66%)Thirty-one (72.1%) of 43 malnourished patients were referred to Dietetics. Malnutrition rate across 144 occupied beds was 29.9% –  18 patients were mildly malnourished, 22 patients moderately malnourished and 3 patients severely malnourished. Eleven (52.3%) of  21 patients with Stage 2 or greater PI’s or non-healing wounds were referred to Dietetics. Wounds screen question was answered for 59% of patients.

Significance of Findings to Allied Health

Findings demonstrate the need for further nursing education regarding completion of the nutrition screen. Accurate screening and early referrals to Dietetics enables timely intervention to optimise patient nutrition status. Improved nutrition status reduces patient infection risk ,assists wound healing and reduces length of stay/incidence of re-admission. These outcomes are favourable to reducing healthcare costs.