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A World with Optimal Nutritional Care for All

This report presents an overview of the first Optimal Nutritional Care for All conference. It outlines the ambition of the conference and the commitment signed by all attendees to meet the challenge of undernutrition.

On the 4-5th November 2014 representatives from eight countries in Europe joined the European Nutrition for Health Alliance (ENHA) and its partners to discuss how to ensure ‘Optimal Nutrition Care for All’ in healthcare systems across Europe. The conference focused on shared learning, developing new ideas and milestones for achievement in developing National Nutritional Care Plans.

National representatives and European stakeholders worked together to develop areas of focus and measures of achievement on a national level. Clinicians, specialists, patient groups, policy makers, researchers, non-governmental organisations, industry and nutrition professionals were all represented.

The national representatives comprised of four ‘focus’ countries (Croatia, Germany, Spain and Turkey)  and four ‘observer’ countries (France, Israel, Poland and Slovenia) who shared experiences and insights to support development of their own National plans.
Further collaboration and plenary presentations came from European patient groups (the European Genetic Alliances Network and European Patients’ Forum), the European Commission, WHO Euro, and the Joint Programming Initiative ‘A Healthy Diet for a Healthy Life’. 

Delegates shared their ‘dreams and motivations’ for better nutritional care in their country, formed plans based on their current work and worked to develop the multi-stakeholder groups and engage with patient organisations which form such a vital part of ensuring optimal nutritional care.

Much work is already taking place, evidence from other countries, support and examples of low cost good practice provided ideas and inspiration for many. Harnessing these best practices and tools will help to build the case for better nutritional care in each country.

At the close of the conference, participants were invited to sign the Charter for Optimal Nutritional Care for All;  pledging commitment to a world where every patient who is malnourished or at risk of undernutrition is systematically screened and has access to appropriate, equitable, high quality nutritional care.

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