Serving up choice and dignity in aged care – how meals are enjoyed is about more than what’s on the plate

Our study looked at how applying Montessori strategies changed mealtimes for staff and residents in a residential aged care setting. We periodically filmed mealtimes, starting before any changes were made and ending with new practices in place.

Routines, materials, and external aids were established to support memory loss and independence. For example, signage invited residents to help themselves to snacks, and a buffet encouraged residents to serve their own meals.

Extending the duration of the breakfast service enabled residents to eat at their own pace, while the preparation of additional food ensured residents had the opportunity for second or third helpings.

Staff across all levels of the organisation were trained and mentored in the Montessori approach. For example, the Montessori mantra “Everything you do for me; you take away from me” was introduced to staff – transforming the way they thought about empowering residents and their own caring roles.

Care staff were encouraged to involve residents in mealtime routines and create meaningful roles, such as setting the table, filling water jugs or writing up the daily menu”

Read about this study in transforming care from Tasmania, Australia in full at…

The Conversation source:

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