- Journal of Gerontological Nursing
- June 2012 - Volume 38 · Issue 6: 38-45
Malnutrition is a serious problem in older adults, particularly for those at risk of hospital readmission. The essential step in managing malnutrition is early identification using a valid nutrition screening tool. The purpose of this study was to validate the Malnutrition Screening Tool (MST) in older adults at high risk of hospital readmission. Two RNs administered the MST to identify malnutrition risk and compared it with the comprehensive Subjective Global Assessment (SGA) to assess nutritional status for patients 65 and older who had at least one risk factor for hospital readmission. The MST demonstrates substantial sensitivity, specificity, and agreement with the SGA. These findings indicate that nursing staff can use the MST as a valid tool for routine screening and rescreening to identify patients at risk of malnutrition. Use of the MST may prevent hospital-acquired malnutrition in acute hospitalized older adults at high risk of readmission.
Ms. Wu is a PhD candidate, Dr. Courtney is Adjunct Professor, Dr. Finlayson is Senior Research Fellow, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Dr. Isenring is National Health and Medical Research Council Australian Clinical Training Fellow, Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation, Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia; and Dr. Shortridge-Baggett is Professor, Department of Graduate Studies, Lienhard School of Nursing, Pace University, New York, New York. In addition, Dr. Isenring is Clinical Academic Fellow Conjoint Senior Lecturer, Queensland Health and University of Queensland, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia; and Dr. Courtney is Head, School of Nursing, Midwifery, and Paramedicine, Australian Catholic University, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.
The authors have disclosed no potential conflicts of interest, financial or otherwise. Funding for this study was provided by a Queensland Nursing Council scholarship and an Australian Postgraduate Award scholarship, and was conducted as part of a PhD study of Dr. Wu. The sponsors had no role in the study design, execution, data analysis and interpretation, writing of the manuscript, or decision to submit the paper for publication. The authors acknowledge the assistance and support provided by all the team members of the Rehabilitation in Older Adults Project 2 (RIO 2) and to the patients and staff in the study hospitals for their time and participation.
Address correspondence to Min-Lin (Winnie) Wu, MSN, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation, Queensland University of Technology, 60 Musk Avenue, Kelvin Grove, Brisbane, Queensland 4059, Australia; e-mail: email@example.com.
Received: June 15, 2011
Accepted: December 05, 2011
Posted Online: May 18, 2012