[PDF] Guidance : commissioning excellent nutrition and hydration

NHS England
NHS England
Publication date:
08 October 2015


The guidance has been produced to address the issues raised within ‘Hard Truths’ and the Francis Report; and to the concerns of patient, carers and the public with regard to malnutrition and dehydration.

Malnutrition is still a concern for the health service and is more common than many people expect – affecting more than three million people in the UK at any one time.

Around 1 in 3 patients admitted to hospital or who are in care homes are malnourished or at risk of becoming so.

Poor nutrition and hydration not only harms patients’ health and wellbeing, it can also reduce their ability to recover and leads to increased admissions to hospitals and care homes.

The new guidance draws together the most up-to-date evidence based resources and research to support commissioners to develop strategies to help ensure excellent nutrition and hydration care in acute services and the community.

It also outlines why commissioners should make this issue a priority – how to tackle the problem, how to assess the impact of commissioned services and highlighting the good work which is already underway.

The document outlines:

  • Why commissioners should make nutrition and hydration a priority
  • How to tackle the problem
  • How to assess the impact of commissioned services
  • How commissioners have begun to tackle the problem via commissioning
  • Further resources to help commissioners address the issue.