Background: Previous studies have documented widespread iatrogenic underfeeding in intensive care unit (ICU) patients. In an experimental setting, we demonstrated the safety and efficacy of a novel enteral feeding protocol designed to overcome the main barriers to adequate delivery of enteral nutrition (EN), the Enhanced Protein-Energy Provision via the Enteral Route Feeding Protocol (PEP uP protocol). The purpose of this article is to describe our experience with implementing this feeding protocol under "real-world" settings in Canada.
Materials and methods: This study is a multicenter quality improvement initiative with a concurrent control group. Selected ICUs implemented the PEP uP protocol, and nutrition practices and outcomes were compared with a concurrent control group of ICUs.
Results: In 2013, of the 24 ICUs from Canada that participated in the International Nutrition Survey, 8 implemented the PEP uP protocol and the remaining 16 served as concurrent control sites. Patients at PEP uP sites received 60.1% of their prescribed energy requirements from EN compared with 49.9% in patients from control hospitals (P = .02). In addition, patients in PEP uP protocol sites received more protein from EN (61.0% vs 49.7% of prescribed amounts; P = .01), were more likely to receive protein supplements (71.8% vs 47.7%; P = .01), and were more likely to receive >80% of their protein requirements by day 3 (46.1% vs 29.3%; P = .05) compared with patients in control hospitals.
Conclusions: In the real-life setting, the PEP uP protocol can improve the delivery of EN to critically ill patients.
Keywords: caloric intake; critical care; energy balance; feeding protocols; nutrition status; nutrition therapy; quality improvement; underfeeding.
© 2014 American Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition.