On May 10, 2013, I am a keynote speaker for the Canadian Society of Nutrition Management. The sold out event will bring together over 250 nutrition managers, dieticians, and directors of food safety.
Nutrition managers routinely assess menu plans to see if they meet customers needs and proper nutritional standards- all on a budget. Resident centered care on a budget is challenging. Nutrition managers are very familiar with the term meal -day -cost which means the average cost of food and labor per resident per day.
It is challenging to provide delicious, healthy meals with restrictied budgets. Residents and their families often have higher expectations today- wanting special, unique menu choices which are not realistic in a large facility. Add to this trendy foods like Gluten Free, lactose free, allergans, and vegetarianism. Many of these special healthy menus are more of a preference than a necessity. Residents today also want choice menus meaning they can select between several entrees and deserts at meal time.
Conflict can sometimes arise between food service and nursing staff. Nurses are directly responsible for resident care and may request changes in service times, food choices and more. Many dieticians are part time at certain facilities as they work at multiple sites, so they don't see all members of the care team regularly and changes may be made without the dieticians approval. It is challenging to create a multidisciplinary team when you work part time.
Many residents will say they like the care they receive but they will complain about the food, because culinary tastes can be very personal.
I look forward to being the closing Keynote Speaker for Canadian Society of Nutrition Management, my motivational speech is This Would Be Funny if it Wasn't Happening to Me. The other keynote speaker is Shelle Rose Charvet with her motivational speech the Customer is Bothering Me!