Better information to patients on food and nutrition
In line with its responsibilities as an agent for public health for our specific constituency, and given the interest of EPF members on this topic, in 2017 and 2018, EPF elevated its strategy in the sphere of information to patients on nutrition. In 2018, EPF has made significant progress advancing the awareness and application of meaningful patient involvement in clinical nutrition, information for patients, and raising awareness of the role of nutrition and diet in managing long-term conditions. Our actions and effective involvement in the European Nutrition Health Alliance have contributed to improving the receptiveness and willingness of the clinical nutrition sector to involve patients.
In March, EPF published a position statement on information to patients on food and nutrition, which highlights nutrition as an essential component of disease management and gives an overview of the EU legislation related to information to patients on food and nutrition. Our statement highlights the need for summaries of clinical nutrition guidelines for patients, the need for more patient involvement in the development of guidelines, and the importance of health literacy and informed decision-making concerning food and nutrition.
Guided by the EPF-EGAN led EU patient task force on nutrition which was launched earlier this year, EPF in collaboration with EGAN published a paper on Clinical Nutrition Guidelines and Summaries for Patients. It includes recommendations primarily intended for scientific societies and guideline developers, which were presented in the opening plenary of the Optimal Nutritional Care for All Conference in November. This work has led to a formal collaboration with the European Society for Clinical Nutrition and Metabolism (ESPEN) with whom we will work in the coming years to develop patient versions of existing guidelines and to ensure strong patient involvement in the review of new guidelines.