Clinical Nutrition: Why Children's
Clinical Nutrition at Children's goes beyond traditional nutritional counseling.
Staffed by 29 registered dietitians, Clinical Nutrition follows every patient treated by Children's throughout the continuum of care – during admission for an acute illness, after hospitalization in a follow-up clinic and via outpatient referral for nutritional counseling. The department provides services seven days a week and on-call pager support 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. The dietitians spent more than 30,000 hours per year caring for patients.
Dietitians at Children's have a wide variety of experience. Many of them have earned additional American Dietetics Association certifications. Because of their expertise, they frequently have been featured throughout the local and national media speaking on such topics as obesity, healthy eating and pediatric renal failure.
Children's is a teaching institution where Medical Nutrition Therapy is led by the dietitian and the medical team and where professional development is encouraged and rewarded. The dietitians are involved in research, which is vital to keeping Children's at the forefront of nutrition care. In 2009, the department reached its goal of having every single staff member actively involved in some form of research.
Clinical Nutrition is supported with a variety of evidence-based clinical tools and online resources. The department employs a dietitian who functions as a clinical editor, allowing the department to have well-referenced and current education materials, media responses and publications. One of those publications is the Oral, Enteral and Parenteral Nutrition Handbook and Formulary, which is provided to Children's clinical staff and sold to a variety of professionals around the country who use it to guide their nutrition practices.