Clinical Nutrition

Nutrition Services is committed to patient care through our clinical dietitian services and patient meal service. Nutritional Services provides services for all patient populations including pediatric, neonatal, adolescent, adult and geriatric.

Clinical Nutrition Services

  • Timely nutrition assessment, counseling, nutrition education and instruction as ordered by the medical staff and/or as defined in departmental policies to meet the needs of patients’ various backgrounds.
  • Clinical nutrition care is provided by 16 registered and licensed dietitians with assistance from dietetic clerks to a diverse patient population.
  • Nutritionally adequate, attractive and satisfying meals to patients, staff, visitors and guests; with accurate diet modifications for patients as ordered by the medical staff.
  • A safe and sanitary food service environment, according to the standards of quality as established by federal, state and local agencies.
  • The Food and Nutrition department is committed to providing healthy menu choices including a daily “heart healthy” menu item.
  • Vending service is provided in various locations throughout the Ascension Seton Family of Hospitals. Vending machines include snacks, hot and cold beverages and cold food.
  • Catering service is provided for any Ascension Seton Family of Hospitals event on a scheduled basis.

Inpatient Nutrition Support Services

Ascension Seton Family of Hospitals uses a team of experts to deliver essential nutrients to patients.

Specialized nutrition support (SNS) is essential to the care of patients who cannot absorb adequate nutrients due to major surgery or specific disease states in which the stomach or bowel are not functioning properly. Nutrition support is especially important for malnourished patients and those at high risk for malnutrition.

The leading professional society governing specialized nutrition support (The American Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition, or ASPEN) defines two types of specialized nutrition support: parenteral and enteral nutrition.

  • Parenteral nutrition is a special liquid food mixture given into the blood with a needle through a vein. The mixture contains all the protein, sugars, fat, vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients needed. It is sometimes called “total parenteral nutrition” or “TPN”.
  • Enteral nutrition is also called “tube feeding” and is a mixture of all the needed nutrients. It is thicker than parenteral nutrition and sometimes looks like a milkshake. It is given through a tube in the stomach or small intestine.

Researchers and providers agree that specialized nutrition support is best provided by a multidisciplinary team including physicians, dietitians, nurses and pharmacists working together as a unit. At several Ascension Seton Family of Hospitals facilities, this highly valued, organized team approach is available and is called the nutrition support service.