The European View of Hospital Undernutrition

Anne Marie Beck, Ulla N. Balknäs, Maria E. Camilo, Peter Fürst, Maria G. Gentile, Kaija Hasunen, Liz Jones, Cora Jonkers-Schuitema, Ulrich Keller, Jean-Claude Melchior, Bent Egberg Mikkelsen, Marusa Pavcic, Peter Schauder, Lauri Sivonen, Orla Zinck, Henriette Øien, L. Ovesen

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Disease-related undernutrition is significant in European hospitals but is seldom treated or prevented. In 1999, the Council of Europe decided to collect information regarding nutrition programs in hospitals, and for this purpose, a network consisting of national experts from 12 of the Partial Agreement member states was established. The aim was to review the current practices in Europe regarding hospital food provision, to highlight deficiencies, and to issue recommendations to improve the nutritional care and support of hospitalized patients. Five major common problems were identified: 1) lack of clearly defined responsibilities, 2) lack of sufficient education, 3) lack of influence and knowledge of the patients, 4) lack of cooperation between different staff groups, and 5) lack of involvement from the hospital management. To solve the problems highlighted, a combined timely and concerted effort is required from national authorities and hospital staff, including managers, to ensure appropriate nutritional care and support.
Original languageEnglish
JournalNutrition in Clinical Practice
Issue number3
Pages (from-to)247-249
Publication statusPublished - 2003


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