Objective: Elderly nursing home residents are under high risk of malnutrition. Early interventions to prevent malnutrition may play a critical role in malnutrition-mortality correlation. This study aimed to obtain insight into the prevalence of malnutrition in nursing homes in the capital city of Turkey and the role of malnutrition in predicting the risk for short-term mortality.
Design: This study was conducted in seven different residential care facilities in Ankara.
Measurements: Nutritional status was evaluated by Mini Nutritional Assessment-Short Form.
Results: The mean age of the 534 participants was 79.46±7.22 years. Nutritional assessment revealed that 15.9% of all older adults suffered from malnutrition and another 53.6% were at risk of malnutrition. The mortality rate for all subjects was 118 (22.1%) over 18 months, which was significantly higher in participants with malnutrition.
Conclusions: We noted a high prevalence of malnutrition and a strong correlation of increased mortality with malnutrition in nursing home residents. Given the negative impact of malnutrition on mortality and morbidity, an emphasis should be placed on an effective nutritional policy in nursing homes.