As malnutrition costs rise for older Americans, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and a coalition of senior advocate and patient organizations commend the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) for proposing adoption of quality measures that will take action against the hidden epidemic of older adult malnutrition.
On April 14, CMS announced it is following recommendations that will help improve the health of millions of adults who face malnutrition. It proposed the adoption of malnutritionfocused quality measures into a future Hospital Inpatient Quality Reporting Program.
"If the proposed rule is finalized, it would be the first time CMS has included malnutrition care in a quality program, which gives health care providers incentives to report performance on quality measures," said registered dietitian nutritionist and Academy President Lucille Beseler. "With diseaseassociated malnutrition in older adults estimated to cost the U.S. $51.3 billion annually, this rule would make an impact on both patient health and health care costs. This is exactly the right public health policy for millions of older Americans who suffer from – or are at risk of – malnutrition."