Mater Hospital Brisbane’s Room Service Boosts Patient Nutrition and Reduces Plate Waste

Australia’s first hotel-style hospital room service in a public hospital has succeeded in reducing plate waste by 17 percent, according to a recent press release from Mater Hospital Brisbane.

Mater Private Hospital Brisbane piloted patient room service in 2013, employing CBORD's Nutrition Service Suite® with Room Service Choice® for better management of special patient diets, more flexibility in meal times, improved quality and range of meals and a reduction in food wastage. Now Mater has expanded the service to their South Brisbane campus, delivering more than 2000 meals a day to suit the individual clinical and dietary requirements of patients.

Malnutrition is a well-documented issue in hospitals, with many patients not eating enough food to assist their recovery. Director of Nutrition and Dietetics Sally McCray said that patient room service has reduced plate wastage by 17 percent. “Mater has seen significant increases in patient satisfaction scores. Patients are actually eating their food because they like it, which increases their nutritional intake,” McCray said.

“By offering patients a high quality, nutritious menu at a time that suits them, patients are more likely to eat and therefore meet their nutritional requirements. We have seen on average a 20-25 percent increase in both calorie and protein intake in at risk patients following the implementation of room service,” she said.

In addition to the increase in patient satisfaction and health, the reduction of plate waste has also resulted in a decrease in total patient food costs. Food Services Manager Liam O’Toole explains that the Room Service initiative is underpinned with an onsite Call Centre that uses CBORD systems that monitor meals for every patient.

“We ensure the patient only receives options that are compatible with their current medical/surgical condition and also alerts staff of missed meals and monitors the patient’s intake and nutrition,” Mr O’Toole said.

“We are very proud to have been recognised for our innovation, receiving the Private Hospitals Association of Queensland Award for Non-Clinical Innovation as well as their Overall Award for Innovation in 2014 and the CBORD International Visionary Award for room service in 2015. It’s exciting to now be able to offer this high quality service to all of our facilities at South Brisbane,” Mr O’Toole said.

Room Service Improves Nutritional Intake and Increases Patient Satisfaction While Decreasing Food Waste and Cost
Sally McCray, APD; Kirsty Maunder, AdvAPD, CHIA; Renee Krikowa, APD; Kristen MacKenzie-Shalders, PhD, APD
Copyright 2017 by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.