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Dietician wins 'Writer of the Year' award

Sam Lucking, UHNM dietician, won 'Writer of the Year'

A UHNM dietician is helping to lead practice on the nutritional care of Covid patients. Sam Lucking, based at Royal Stoke University Hospital, recently won Clinical Nutrition magazine’s ‘Writer of the Year’ award in conjunction with colleague Phill Johnston for their work examining best practice in critical care.

Sam said: “This was all about researching and sharing the best and most effective way of feeding and nourishing Covid patients who are seriously ill in Critical Care. Looking after any patient in critical care presents a challenge, but with Covid there are added complications because they can sometimes be completely sedated and ventilated, requiring enteral feeding and often in a prone position.

“We looked at different kinds of patients and examined the ways various dietetic and medical interventions affected them. We also discussed nutritional support, including oral nutrition and artificial nutrition via nasogastric tube. Then we completed three-month follow-up investigations which looked at the longstanding effects of the virus and the effects of an intensive care stay.

“I was approached by the British Dietetic Association about collaboration on a national dataset. We had huge interest from other hospitals all over the UK and I even had colleagues in other countries who were keen to start their own investigations using our dataset.

“The work we have undertaken will help guide the nutritional care of critically ill Covid patients and because we had such great engagement with the project across various hospitals throughout the country any data collected by will be more extensive and therefore more reliable.

“Getting this award is wonderful and completely unexpected. It was a great learning experience and I will hopefully continue to write for various publications to share good practice with colleagues in the future.”

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