A small scale study to investigate a (non NHS) nursing home staffs' level of knowledge in relation to thickened fluids and textured diets and to evaluate the effectiveness of their training.
Crockett, Jessica Ruth
Cardiff Metropolitan University
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Background: The prevalence of dysphagia, a swallowing difficulty, is known to increase with age alone and is particularly high in the dementia population due to a global loss of cognitive functions. This poses potential problems with patients being at an increased risk of aspiration pneumonia, an inflammation of the lungs due to inhalation of foreign substances, and is a leading cause of death in nursing homes. Currently there is no statutory stipulations which require care home workers to be trained in dysphagia and the lack of knowledge has been known to lead to Protection of Vulnerable Adult cases and at worse corporate manslaughter proceedings. Method: A single-group pre-test-post-test design was used to gather information via questionnaires about 14 care home staffs' knowledge of textured diets and thickened fluids before and after training given by a dysphagia representative. Results: A repeated measures analysis of variance showed a significant increase in knowledge following training (F(1,13) = 73.627, p < 0.001). Conclusions: Although there was a significant improvement in knowledge levels at all three time points their knowledge was still inadequate for their job role and particular training issues were highlighted for further investigation.
B.Sc.(Hons) Speech and Language Therapy
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