Nutrition in primary care delivers health and economic benefits – Griffith News
Personalized nutritional advice from primary health care providers, including general practitioners, is better than usual care for improving a person’s health, and costs a little more, according to a Griffith University study.
Researchers from Griffith’s Healthy Primary Care team conducted an international review of published health studies in the UK, Ireland, Western Europe, the Netherlands, Sweden and Australia to determine the cost of care nutrition for patients with cardiovascular disease, diabetes, obesity and malnutrition.
“We found that personalized support for healthy eating provided in community health services was much more effective in improving a person’s health than usual care, and only slightly more expensive,” said the principal investigator, Dr Katelyn Barnes.
She said that while it was to be expected that any intervention would be more expensive than usual care, they still found that the cost required to improve people’s health was minimal and within the limits recommended for patients. viable health investments.
“The studies we looked at showed that over three to 24 months, a person who eats healthier may have fewer visits to health professionals, cut back on medication, and feel more productive. “
Given the benefits, Dr Barnes says now is the time for smart governments to realize the opportunity they have: invest in nutritional care to save money.
“The cost of not investing in regular support for healthy eating will be primarily felt by individuals through poorer health outcomes and increased use of health services,” she said.
“The study is timely given current efforts by the federal government to establish a 10-year plan for Australian primary care, including being more comprehensive and people-centered.
“Nutrition clearly has a leading role in the healthcare system of our future. Overall, the benefits of a person’s dietary improvements are felt by many parties, including governments, general businesses, medicare and utilities, and individuals through lower health spending ( via taxes) and to an improvement in the quality of life and economic productivity.
The study was published in the journal Nutritional advice.