5 Key Reasons To Invest In Your Dining Experience For People You Support Living With Dementia

In care homes, disease-related malnutrition predisposes residents to infections, pressure ulcers and a greater number of days in bed.

Below we reveal statistics for the prevalence of malnutrition in social care settings in those with disease and with older people:

Residential Home 27%

Care Home 35%

Nursing Home 41%

And according to the Alzheimer’s Association facts and figures report 2020  48% percent of nursing home residents are now living with Alzheimer’s or other dementias

 Up to 45 per cent of people living with dementia experience clinically significant weight loss over one year, and up to half of people with dementia in care homes have an inadequate food intake.

There is no doubt that getting people with Dementia to eat can be challenging.

Our MD Jo Bonser has lived experience of this having cared for her Mum living at home with vascular dementia for over 6 years,  (How To Help And Encourage People With Dementia To Eat Better ) which led her to write our highly acclaimed free resource guide to help people with dementia to eat better, our Dignified Dining Solutions Guide.

In her book #Dine with Dignity, Unlocking the Mystery of Dementia and Dining,  author Toni Fisk tells us there are 30 potential reasons why someone living with dementia  might decline to eat

They may have problems eating putting them at risk of malnutrition, and they can experience complex interactions with the mealtime environment, which coupled with many potential eating difficulties can prevent nutritional intake

Malnourished individuals have poorer clinical outcomes and greater healthcare use which impacts on the health economy.

They will experience:

  • Physical and functional decline which affects their strength, quality of life, recovery and immune response
  • Poorer clinical outcomes including infections, wounds, complications, falls risk and mortality.:
  • Greater healthcare use ie hospital admissions, readmissions, hospital stays, GP visits, prescription costs

The cost of not treating malnutrition is far greater than the cost of treating it.

Doing nothing will continue to impact on your costs; managing a malnourished patient will cost you more than 3x more at £1,645 for social care,  than a non-malnourished patient of  £440, respectively.

Tackling malnutrition can improve

  • Nutritional status
  • Clinical outcomes
  • Reduced healthcare use

NB  Due to the complex interactions with the mealtime environment, coupled with many potential eating difficulties which can prevent nutritional intake for people living with dementia, ensuring you are implementing a high quality and caring mealtime experience is a key strategy which can help to maintain mealtime independence, prevent malnutrition and improve quality of life for the people you support.

Therefore, investing in educating your staff and upgrading your dining environment and your meal time experience to help overcome mealtime eating difficulties and improve nutrition is one of the best business decisions you can make to help you to:

  • Increase your residents wellbeing and quality of life
  • Gain an improved reputation
  • Improve your ratings with CQC
  • Reduce your food wastage
  • Save on your valuable nursing time

Here at Hcsuk, we have developed a range of totally unique services, based on Jo’s lived experience, designed to help care homes just like you improve your mealtime experience. Here’s how we can help you upgrade your mealtime experience:

  • To help  provide you with  a platform and a starting point on your mealtime improvement journey why not download our FREE and highly acclaimed resource to help people living with dementia to eat better
  • To initiate a real change in your mealtime culture and engage your teams  you and your staff can watch our must have mealtime  training video ‘Made with Love’
  • To help you assess your current mealtime experience and learn about areas for improvement you can benefit from our comprehensive 50 point, dementia specific mealtime checklist completed with action plan
  • To ensure your dining environment is supporting a positive mealtime experience for people living with dementia you can benefit from our Dementia Enabling Dining Environment Audit with follow up report and suggested improvements
  • To educate your teams to deliver a 5 star dining experience you can experience our interactive training workshop ‘The Dementia Mealtime Challenge’
  • To improve the presentation of your pureed meals you will gain from our Complete Food Mould Implementation Solution providing you with all the tools you need to create delicious and appetising pureed meals for your residents with swallowing difficulties
  • To help overcome mealtime eating difficulties for the people you support we can help you to create individual and personalised mealtime plans.
  • To assist you overcome specific mealtime challenges and achieve your desired  you can engage us in outcomes bespoke mealtime consultancy projects, where we work with you to create and implement a strategy for continuous improvement.

If you’d like to have a free no obligation discovery call to find out more about how we can help, you can simply organise it online by clicking the following link to Jo’s (our Mealtime Consultant and Trainer) diary and book in at your convenience


And if you haven’t already, why not download our FREE Dignified Dining Solutions Guide resource to help you support people living with dementia to eat better here.

Image Source: Unsplash

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Customer Testimonials

“We’ve built a strong working relationship with Hcsuk over many years, having used them to source, install and service our medical training equipment. We have always found the team very professional, helpful, and well-organised. We’d like to give a particular shout out to Phil, the technician / engineer who has been the consistent friendly face visiting our business to inspect and test our mobility hoists every 6 months. Thank you for all your support and advice.”

P. B. (Care Manager), Blue Bird Care Ltd

You are part of a great company, if we can help you grow by contracting you out to our sites its good for you, but it’s great for us because your service is fantastic, very efficient, everyone within Hcsuk is super helpful in answering queries and every time we’ve had an issue, Hcsuk has always been there to solve the problem almost immediately, which is fantastic.

Leicestershire County Council

Truly exceptional levels of customer service, the best I have experienced for many years. Very helpful staff made follow up calls to ask how the equipment was performing and supplied extra user instructions to supplement the manufacturers manual. I would not hesitate to order from this company again.

Savills Estate Agents

We would just like to pass on our thanks for all of your help with our orders and would be pleased if you would also pass on our thanks to the manufacturers for being so accommodating in meeting our requirements. We have found everyone very helpful.

Lincs Partnership NHS Foundation Trust

Since I set up the account for Hcsuk over 18 months ago I have found them to be an excellent advocate of our products. They have been willing to learn about the technical and servicing elements to our hoists and the sales staff have really taken on board and proactively promoted our range where possible. I feel that as a company Hcsuk have got the desire and right people in place for growing in this competitive industry. They seem to push themselves to go that little bit further and offer that little bit more to stand out from the rest. May our relationship continue going from strength to strength.

Joerns Healthcare

As a care home manager I have used Hcsuk for my supplies for the last 20 years in two homes. I have always found them to be helpful and reliable. Their products are of the highest standards, they are able to source anything. The delivery service is prompt and regular so I do not have to keep large amounts of stock. They supply extra services such as servicing and repairs which are done efficiently, and training in COSHH. The reps are pleasant and helpful bringing new products to my attention but are never ”pushy”. Aftercare is good, any problems soon sorted. I would recommend them highly and would not think of using anyone else.

Littleover Nursing Home

HPC have supplied Hcsuk (Health Care Services Ltd) for well over a decade now and we would consider them to be a high quality and professional business run in an organised and progressive manor. We do not rank our customers or have a preferred customer status but if we were to introduce such a scheme I can confirm that Hcsuk would easily make such a grade.

HPC Healthline

As a manufacturer we look for key values in a distributor some of these include honesty, reliability, commitment and reputation. Hcsuk carry all of these and many more. With a twenty plus year working relationship we now place Jo and the team at the top of our distributor list. I have no hesitation in recommending Hcsuk to any prospective manufacturer or customer and wish Jo and the team all the best for the future.

Cleenol Group Ltd

It is brilliant that we are able to ring Health Care Services and that you will go the extra mile to get us the stock we need as soon as possible.

Rykneld View Nursing Home

Just to say a huge thankyou to you and your fantastic team, and I mean that from the Heart. I have never before experienced such a person centred company.

Hampton Grange Nursing Home

What I like about working with Health Care Services is the relationship we have built up and the personal service. The homes report that you always deliver on time, the quality is consistantly good and the prices competitive. Your team members are always willing to go that extra mile for us and if ever we have an issue there is always someone there to save the day.

Eastgate Care

VAT Relief Information

Conditions for VAT relief for disabled people

Some of the products which can be purchased from the Hcsuk website are available for an eligible person to purchase without paying VAT on them. HM Revenue and Customs sets out the conditions when equipment for disabled people might be free of VAT and how to claim exemption from paying VAT on these products.

Products a can only be exempt from VAT when all the following conditions are met:

  1. The customer is eligible to purchase supplies at the zero rate
  2. The goods are for the personal or domestic use of the customer
  3. The goods and services are eligible to be supplied at the zero rate

A more detailed explanation of each of these conditions is given below, but you should visit the HM Revenue and Customs Website to fully understand the conditions

The product must be being purchased for someone who is chronically ill or disabled.

A person is ‘chronically sick or disabled’ if he/she is a person:

It does not include a frail elderly person who is otherwise able-bodied or any person who is only temporarily disabled or incapacitated, such as with a broken limb.

‘personal or domestic’ use means that the supply must be made available specifically for the use of an eligible individual.

You don’t have to physically buy the goods in person. If your parent, guardian or wife or husband buys the goods and services for you, then you won’t be charged VAT.

What counts as personal or domestic use?

Personal or domestic use means that the goods or services are supplied for your own private use, rather than for business purposes. Also, the goods or services must be just for your own use – not for use by anyone else, or chronically sick or disabled people in general. However, if you and your partner are both chronically sick or disabled and you buy goods or services for both of you to use, then you won’t have to pay VAT.

Products which are offered for sale on this website which qualify for VAT relief to be claimed for an eligible person.

The products which can be bought without paying VAT are:

Only the products on our site carrying the VAT exemption price (the smaller price marked ex VAT) are eligible to be purchased this way and you must tick the box on the basket page indicating that you wish to claim VAT exemption on the items in your basket that are eligible for VAT relief.

How to claim

On the my basket page of this website a link to the online declaration form is provided if the basket contains a product that qualifies for VAT relief. You must tick the box to state you wish to claim VAT relief on the eligible product and complete in full the reason by which you are ‘chronically sick or disabled’ and name and address of the claimant. If possible the person making the claim should complete this form, but a family member, carer or medical professional may complete the form on the claimants behalf. To submit the claim and receive the VAT relief, click the ‘Submit VAT Relief Claim’ button before proceeding to the checkout.

Please note that all orders submitted with a VAT relief claim form completed are checked before the order is processed.

It is necessary to complete a separate claim form each time a qualifying product is purchased from Hcsuk.


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