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Members' Business — S6M-00917 Clare Adamson: UK Malnutrition Awareness Week 2021, Malnutrition in Older People

Tuesday 26 October 2021 6:35 PM

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That the Parliament acknowledges UK Malnutrition Awareness Week 2021; notes that the annual initiative, which was launched by BAPEN and Malnutrition Taskforce, will take place between 11 and 17 October; believes that malnutrition, which is also known as undernutrition, is a substantial public health issue, with one in 10 older people in Scotland being at risk of, or living with, the condition; recognises that research from projects such as Eat Well Age Well (Food Train) indicates that this figure might be an underestimate, with an estimated 30% of older people at risk; believes that measures such as screening and early intervention, training for health and social care professionals, investment in community initiatives that address social isolation and policies that take account of the differences between food poverty and food insecurity, are integral to addressing malnutrition in older people; understands the continuing challenges faced by older people across Scotland who are at risk of malnutrition with isolation, which has been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, being a contributory factor; further understands the unprecedented and sustained demand on health and social care services and third sector organisations since the onset of the pandemic; notes the view that addressing malnutrition in older people is a matter of national importance both as a moral imperative and an issue that puts avoidable strain on the country's health and social care services; further notes calls for the Scottish Government do everything in its power to ensure that everyone has reliable access to nutritious, culturally-appropriate and affordable food, as recommended by the Social Renewal Advisory Board in its January 2021 report, If not now, when?; commends the work of food policy organisations, such as the charity, Food Train, and dedicated volunteers, in advancing this issue, and wishes everyone involved with UK Malnutrition Awareness Week every success.

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