Accurate nutrition supports recovery in ICU

WMRF head of development Joe Conneely, Westmead Hospital head of dietetics & nutrition Peter Talbot with Tracey Hammond and Liz Wheatley from Perpetual.

Assessing the energy and nutrition requirements of critically ill patient is incredibly difficult.

The team at Westmead Hospital’s intensive care unit (ICU) are acutely aware of the importance of meeting these needs as timely nutrition therapy decreases patient mortality rates.

Westmead Medical Research Foundation (WMRF) received a generous $111,000 donation from the RP Medical Fund, the Baxter Charitable Foundation and the E B Myer Charity Fund as part of Perpetual’s IMPACT philanthropy program.

The money was used to purchase an Indirect Calorimeter to precisely measure resting energy expenditure in patients, enabling physicians and dieticians to accurately prescribe nutritional needs.

Malnutrition in patients increases the risk of infection, leads to poor wound healing, increases time on the ventilator and causes a longer length of stay in the ICU and the hospital.

“The calorimeter is now in its implementation stage, with six ICU patients per week having their nutrition requirements calculated by a more accurate method,” Westmead Hospital dietetics and nutrition head Peter Talbot said.

“We cannot thank enough the donors who enabled the purchase of this equipment.”

The philanthropy team from Perpetual recently visited Westmead Hospital and had the opportunity to see the calorimeter in operation.

For more information about supporting medical research & patient care, visit or call 1800 639 037.

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