Dietetics COVID-19 knowledge hub: about us

Find out more about the background of the Nutrition and COVID-19 recovery knowledge hub

Inspired by patients and professionals

At the start of the pandemic the British Dietetic Association asked us to bring together a general agreement on the best way to nutritionally care for people who had COVID-19 infection. 

Our work involved collating published research and guidelines, finding out what was happening on the frontline of healthcare, and talking to patients and healthcare professionals about their experiences. 

This knowledge hub has been inspired by the professionals and patients we spoke to about the nutritional care following COVID-19 infection.


Why a knowledge hub?

The purpose of the expert panels was to form a consensus on the nutritional care for people recovering from COVID-19 infection.

The panels produced many consensus statements, and the statements listed here provide the rationale for developing this knowledge hub:

  • A resource is required which aims to provide evidence on nutritional care to support COVID-19 recovery for patients and healthcare professionals.
  • The required resource needs to map out information about what is proven to be safe and recommended for nutritional care following COVID-19 infection. Also, to translate the evidence so it is suitable for a patient-centred care.
  • There are a wide range of symptoms which occur during on-going or long COVID-19 stages. Many of these are affected or influenced by diet, which highlights the importance of nutritional care.
  • All healthcare practitioners, particularly those seeing long COVID-19 patients, should apply national protocols and guidelines in a coordinated way.
  • Other staff (non-dietitians) involved in the care of patients with COVID-19 need to be trained in the foundations of nutrition and diet to enable them to use nutritional strategies to support COVID-19 recovery.
  • Healthcare practitioners, regardless of speciality, need to recognise diet as an influencing factor for COVID-19 recovery and to signpost, treat and refer accordingly.

Each section in this knowledge hub will start with the consensus statements produced by our expert panels relevant to that section.

We then provide the information we have collated under relevant subheadings. This includes scientific evidence and useful resources from other organisations relevant to aspects of nutritional care. Some words or phrases have hyperlinks to related sections where you can find more information. References are listed at the end of each section.


Meet the team

The knowledge hub is brought to you by a team of nutrition and diet experts from across the UK. 

We have been working together to make information available to healthcare professionals and the public about the best practice in nutritional care for people with COVID-19 infection or its effects.

The team

The project

During the early days of the pandemic there was a lot of information being rapidly released by many different organisations and individual experts.

Our goal was to look at the available information about nutrition and summarise the findings in a useful way so professionals, particularly dietitians, could deliver the best possible nutrition care.

We undertook a survey to find out how dietitians were working during the pandemic to support nutrition in patients with the disease. We have submitted a rapid review to inform evidence-based decision making on the nutritional care of patients hospitalised with COVID-19 infection, summarising all the published information up to March 2021, which is under review.

We convened two panels to examine the information and produce consensus statements to inform future care of patients with COVID-19. This knowledge hub is the result of this work. Our sincere thanks go to all the members of our panels and our reviewers.

Panel members

Patients

  • Amy
  • Aquarius
  • Imogen Canavan
  • Andrea Hepworth
  • David Mulford
  • S Newman
  • Michael Panayi
  • Judith Parsons
  • Naila Shadi
  • Penny Tassoni


Professionals

  • Elaine Anderson – Dietitian
  • Liz Anderson – Nurse
  • Jenny Camaradou – Research Development Consultant
  • George Coxon – Mental Nurse and Care Home Representative
  • Hayley Henderson – Pharmacist
  • Dr Anne Holdoway – Dietitian
  • Caroline Hughes – Food2You Manager
  • Dr Jackie McRae – Speech and Language Therapist
  • Lynsey Spillman – Dietitian
  • Alison Smith – Dietitian
  • Ghislaine Swinburn – Dietitian
  • Carol Wilson – Occupational Therapist and Psychotherapist

Reviewers

  • Penny Tassoni
  • Naila Shadi
  • Jenny Child
  • Michael Panayi
  • Imogen Canavan
Names are known only to research lead:

  • Kate Mack
  • S Newman
  • Sarah Smith