As part of the multidisciplinary team, the critical care dietitian is vital to guide decisions about the route and timing of nutrition therapy, assess the patients nutritional needs, monitor fluid and electrolyte status and blood glucose control, initiate use of specialised enteral and parenteral products and adjust the nutrition care plan to the specific disease state and changes in the patients clinical condition.
Attendance at the ICU morning ward round is pivotal in highlighting the importance of nutrition in the overall care plan and implementing key decisions to optimise nutritional delivery and achievement of nutrition goals.
At The Alfred, the ICU dietitian participates in student training, provides education on ICU nutrition to nursing and medical staff, undertakes research and audit, assists in the development and review of guidelines and protocols, and sets standards for the monitoring of nutrition.
Malnutrition in critically ill patients can lead to increased morbidity and mortality, making nutrition therapy a vital component of care. The ICU dietitian is the primary professional who is focussed on the safest and most effective route and type of nutrition therapy for the individualised ICU patient. A dietitian works in each pod of the Alfred ICU, providing a seven day week and on call dietetic service.
The Senior Clinical ICU Dietitian can be contacted for more details