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Nutrition Care Process Implementation: Experiences in Various Dietetics Environments in Sweden

Lövestam, Elin, Boström, Anne-Marie, Orrevall, Ylva
Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics 2017 v.117 no.11 pp. 1738-1748
dietetics, dietitians, focus groups, health services, hospitals, leadership, models, patients, terminology, working conditions, Sweden
The Nutrition Care Process (NCP) and Nutrition Care Process Terminology (NCPT) are currently being implemented by nutrition and dietetics practitioners all over the world. Several advantages have been related to this implementation, such as consistency and clarity of dietetics-related health care records and the possibility to collect and research patient outcomes. However, little is known about dietitians’ experiences of the implementation process.The aim of this qualitative study was to explore Swedish dietitians’ experiences of the NCP implementation process in different dietetics environments.Thirty-seven Swedish dietitians from 13 different dietetics workplaces participated in seven focus group discussions that were audiotaped and carefully transcribed. A thematic secondary analysis was performed, after which all the discussions were re-read, following the implementation narrative from each workplace. In the analysis, The Promoting Action on Research Implementation in Health Services implementation model was used as a framework.Main categories identified in the thematic analysis were leadership and implementation strategy, the group and colleagues, the electronic health record, and evaluation. Three typical cases are described to illustrate the diversity of these aspects in dietetics settings: Case A represents a small hospital with an inclusive leadership style and discussion-friendly culture where dietitians had embraced the NCP/NCPT implementation. Case B represents a larger hospital with a more hierarchical structure where dietitians were more ambivalent toward NCP/NCPT implementation. Case C represents the only dietitian working at a small multiprofessional primary care center who received no dietetics-related support from management or colleagues. She had not started NCP/NCPT implementation.The diversity of dietetics settings and their different prerequisites should be considered in the development of NCP/NCPT implementation strategies. Tailored implementation strategies should be considered in relation to context, such as increased dietetics support and facilitation where management does not lead or support the implementation process.