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Adherence to Guidelines on Nutritional Support by Medical Residents in an Intensive Care Unit in China: A Prospective Observational Study

Lei Yang, Zhouzhou Dong

Intensive Care Unit (ICU), Ningbo Medical Center Lihuili Eastern Hospital, Ningbo, Zhejiang, China (mainland)

Med Sci Monit 2019; 25:8645-8650

DOI: 10.12659/MSM.917684

Available online:

Published: 2019-11-16

BACKGROUND: The use of evidence-based clinical practice guidelines improves the quality of patient medical care. Although the implementation of clinical guidelines can be a challenge, nutritional support is important for critically ill patients. This prospective observational study aimed to investigate the attention to and implementation of guidelines for nutritional support in an Intensive Care Unit (ICU) in China and to identify factors that determine attention to these guidelines.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: The study included 16 medical residents who were interviewed while working in an emergency Intensive Care Unit (ICU) during one month. A structured interview questionnaire on attention to patient nutritional guidelines was used. Interviews were conducted daily after an early ICU ward round, and residents were asked questions regarding each patient.
RESULTS: The response rate from medical residents was 99.6% (455/457). The rate of attention to and implementation of nutritional support guidelines was 57.1% (260/455) and 73.1% (334/457), respectively. Multivariate logistic regression analysis showed that weekdays and weekends (OR, 0.59; 95% CI, 0.38-0.91), medical groups (OR, 0.67; 95% CI, 0.46-0.98), and the numbers of patients admitted (OR, 0.91; 95% CI, 0.85-0.97) were independently associated with attention to nutritional support guidelines by the residents.
CONCLUSIONS: Nutritional guidelines for patients in the ICU were not fully paid attention to by medical residents or implemented. The reasons included high work demands and lack of standardized training. Further studies are needed to determine whether measures to reduce workload and improve medical training can improve adherence to nutritional support guidelines in the ICU.

Keywords: Guidelines as Topic, Intensive Care Units, Nutritional Support