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Newark pilots the new Mealtime Observation Tool


07 June 2024

Newark pilots the new Mealtime Observation Tool

Anavo & the NHS work together to transform residents’ mealtimes. 

Since August 2023, Anavo’s Newark care home has worked together with NHSGGC Care home Collaborative to make residents feel more valued and mealtime experiences more positive. 

Initially, the NHS Care Home Dietitians identified that their own mealtime audit was lengthy and outdated. With over 43 questions to answer, the scope was too wide, and they were missing the opportunity to truly capture residents’ thoughts and wishes. This left a sour taste and a feeling of frustration among residents. It took away a level of independence and choice turning mealtimes, that were once a highlight of the day, into a mundane task. 

Through recognition of her great work on the CHC pilot Project Milkshake previously, Newark’s Care Home Manager, Nicola Watt, was asked if Newark would be interested in piloting a new mealtime initiative to streamline the audit and give a voice of choice back to residents. The whole team at Newark jumped at the chance, and 4 staff members volunteered straight away – Senior Carer Robert Lamont and Carers Penny Mullen, Sharon Moore & David Morrison. 

The NHS Care Home Dietitians trained the 4 volunteers up to become Mealtime Champions on a pilot Mealtime Observation Tool. They then used their expertise and skills to train and advise other team members. Every month, the Champions and Dietitians collated and discussed the data produced by the tool itself identifying changes required to optimise the tool making it more user and resident friendly. Since onboarding and hearing its positive impact, other staff wanted to join the scheme resulting in a second team due to be trained this month.