Planning Nutrition Education Interventions for the Medical Workforce: ‘Nutrition Education Workshop for Tayside Doctors’ (NEWTayDoc) - A pilot project to inform development of the Need for Nutrition Education Programme (NNEdPro)

Sumantra Ray, Celia Laur, Minha Rajput Ray, Joan Gandy, Susie Schofield

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Background: It is estimated that one in three hospital patients in the UK is affected by malnutrition. Increased awareness of the problem could help prevent hospital malnutrition and associated problems including delayed recovery, increased length of hospital stay, worsening of prognosis and an increased risk of serious complications. Evidence suggests there is a gap in nutrition teaching across a number of medical school curricula and that this may be filled through an innovative approach to nutrition education.
Aim: To conduct a pilot education intervention ‘Nutrition Education Workshop for Tayside Doctors’ (NEWTayDoc) aimed at developing a wider reaching programme, targeting later-stage medical students or junior doctors.
Study Design: An intervention was developed and piloted at Ninewell Medical School, Dundee, with eight foundation year doctors working in NHS Tayside. A malnutrition questionnaire was used pre and post intervention to assess knowledge. Two focus groups were held, that evaluated using thematic analyses that explored related issues.
Results: Analysis of pre and post intervention questionnaires demonstrated a 24% (p=0.001) increase in knowledge following intervention. Thirty per cent showed no improvement in knowledge, while 34% maintained residual knowledge. Qualitative results highlighted the potential to apply this innovative approach to educational intervention, on a larger scale. Participant feedback also demonstrated the need to deliver nutrition training earlier within the undergraduate medical curriculum.
Discussion and Conclusion: Based on objective responses from the tutors as well as participants, this intervention was deemed successful. The strengths and limitations of the NEWTayDoc education innovation pilot were reviewed and incorporated to form the basis for a national initiative, the UK Need for Nutrition Education Programme (NNEdPro), which is currently underway. Key suggestions from the tutor and participant feedback incorporated into NNEdPro, included introducing nutrition earlier in medical training and development of an evaluation questionnaire based on learning outcomes to assess knowledge, attitudes and practices (KAP); as well as conducting post-training evaluations after a three month interval to reduce recall bias.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages10
JournalMedEdPublish
Publication statusPublished - 2012

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