National Clinical Guideline 22

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National Clinical Guideline 22 on inpatient hospital nutrition

Screening and increased treatment to prevent malnutrition has been mandated for all inpatients in Irish public hospitals, as part of National Clinical Guideline 22 on inpatient hospital nutrition – published in April 2020.

The key protocol is the roll out of nutrition screening, as part of all public hospital admissions. Those identified as at risk, because of weight loss and inadequate intake, are then typically to receive high protein and energy diets while in hospital, together with oral nutrition supplements (ONS) as needed.

Nurses will conduct screening and higher risk patients will be referred to hospital Dietitians for assessment and follow up. All inpatients are also to be re-screened weekly.

The Guideline Nutrition screening and use of oral nutrition support for adults in the acute care setting was developed through the National Clinical Effectiveness Committee (NCEC), and published by the Department of Health. IrSPEN was centrally involved and has strongly supported this work.

IrSPEN encourages all public hospitals to work towards their implementation and following is information to support this work.

THE GUIDELINE (published at


RESOURCES – to follow