About this service

Nutrition

Colchester Hospital

Adults

We provide support in care of the elderly wards.

We support patients who need artificial nutrition in hospital and at home.

We provide support and advice to community colleagues.

Children

We have a highly skilled team of expert children’s dietitians who support children and young people in a range of areas, including:

  • Cystic fibrosis
  • Allergies
  • Neonatal and young babies
  • Stomach and intestine disorders
  • Diabetes

We have clinics for children with these needs and issues:

  • tube feeding at home
  • food allergies
  • faltering growth
  • fussy eating
  • healthy eating and support for overweight children

How to get here

View hospital directions

Clinics

Contact

Adult team including Nutrition Nurse Specialist:
01206 742 166

Paediatric Team: 01206 742 668

Appointments: 01206 742 625

Clinical Lead for Nutrition & Dietetics: 01206 742 819

Ipswich Hospital

The Nutrition and Dietetics department comprises of dietitians, dietetic assistant practitioners, dietetic assistants, secretaries and administration assistants. We work to provide nutritional care to both inpatients and outpatients as well as in the community.

Dietitans

Dietitians are qualified health professionals who assess, diagnose and treat diet and nutrition problems at an individual and wider public health level. Uniquely, dietitians use the most up-to-date public health and scientific research on food, health and disease, which they translate into practical guidance to enable people to make appropriate lifestyle and food choices.
Dietitians are statutorily regulated, with a protected title and are governed by an ethical code, to ensure that they always work to the highest standard. Therefore the title dietitian can only be used by those appropriately trained professionals who have registered with the Health Care Professions Council and whose details are on the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) website.

Dietetic assistant practitioners

Dietetic assistant practitioners deliver delegated dietetic care to those patients who are at risk of malnutrition. They have achieved specific dietetic competencies in line with those developed by the British Dietetic Association (BDA).

Dietetic assistants

Dietetic assistants work under the supervision of a dietitian in either a community or hospital setting and provide a supportive role. They may carry out basic assessments and capture information required by the dietitian.

Paediatric dietitians

Paediatric dietitians assess the need for dietary management and design an individual plan to meet these needs.
They assess and monitor a child’s growth and ongoing nutritional requirements.
The paediatric dietitians at Ipswich Hospital see children (0-16 years of age) that have been referred to the service. They are seen in one of our hospital-based clinics or community-based clinics as well as in virtual clinics. Children are usually referred by a paediatric consultant, GP, health visitor or by a school nurse.

We see babies, children and young adults with a range of nutritional issues, including:

  • unexplained weight loss or poor growth
  • food allergies and intolerances
  • premature babies with poor growth
  • those who require tube feeding
  • cystic fibrosis, Oncology, cardiac and metabolic patients
  • obesity—we see children under 2 years of age. Those over 2 years should be referred to One Life Suffolk

Paediatric dietitians will work with parents and children to identify any changes that need to be made depending on the reason for the referral. We offer support to:

  • improve their symptoms, e.g. allergies
  • encourage your child with their eating
  • promote weight gain in children who are underweight
  • meet their nutritional requirements when a child is having a restricted diet
  • support weight reduction

Adult dietitians

Our dietitians provide tailored, dietary advice for a range of conditions, including:

  • healthy eating advice to help manage diabetes and/or promote weight reduction
  • nutrition support to help people with a reduced appetite, or people who are unable to meet their requirements;
  • increased requirements which may be related to inflammatory bowel disease, cancer, wound healing, respiratory or liver disease
  • therapeutic advice: identifying foods which may be triggering symptoms and guiding individuals on how to achieve a nutritionally adequate diet whilst managing their conditions;
  • advising on special diets for specific conditions such as Coeliac disease, renal disease and diverticular disease

Dietitians can advise on diets appropriate for allergies and intolerances but please note they do not carry out allergy testing. A referral from your GP to an allergy specialist would be required if testing is indicated and appropriate.

Your clinic appointment/Virtual Clinic information

If you have a Virtual Clinic appointment then you can access your appointment here:

Useful information:

Prior to your appointment it would be useful for you to have recorded a weight and height for yourself/your child and keep this information handy for us.
For children, a recent health visitor weight in the red book would also be acceptable.
You may also want to keep a simple food diary for the 3 days prior to you appointment to provide us with more detailed information.
We are currently able to offer a range of appointments including virtual (telephone or videocalls). we are currently running a very limited face to face service due to COVID-19 restrictions.

The decision regarding the type of appointment you will be offered will be made by the dietitians when they triage your referral. Please check your clinic letter for further details regarding which type of appointment you have been offered.

Visit the Attend Anywhere page

Instructions for attending your telephone or video appointment – see the Attend Anywhere Patient Information Leaflet for help.

My Attend Anywhere appointment

If you are due to have a video consultation, we will schedule your appointment as normal and send you the details of the appointment date and time.
Before your appointment, please test your equipment. You can do this by clicking on the relevant clinic button that your appointment is for below.

Virtual Clinics

Find out more about how your consultation will work, HERE.
You can also view our questions and answers page for more information.
On the date and time of your appointment you will be able to enter your clinic below via the ‘start video call’ button. It is a good idea to enter the waiting room a few minutes early. Find your waiting room by clicking on the appropriate button for the clinic.

Virtual Clinics

Please complete all the details required, including your date of birth and a phone number so we can call you back on if there are any difficulties. We will not store the details you submit and any details will be transferred securely.

What happens after my appointment? 

Depending on the outcome of your appointment you may be discharged back to your referrer, or a virtual follow up will be arranged. This appointment will be discussed and agreed with you at the time. Follow ups can occur any time from a few weeks to a year after an initial appointment depending on the indication.

Nutritional supplements

If it has been recommended that you take some nutritional supplement drinks as a result of your assessment then the dietitian will electronically write to your GP requesting a prescription for the relevant products. You will need to contact your surgery to find out when the prescription will be ready for collection. Do not wait for your surgery or pharmacy to contact you, prescriptions are not always completed automatically.

If you need to try any drinks first these will be requested with your consent via an electronic sample service and should be sent direct to your door within 5 working days.

What if I no longer need an appointment?

If you feel that you no longer require advice from a dietitian then please contact us in good time to cancel your appointment. This will enable the appointment to be offered to somebody else, who is waiting to be seen.
Please note that if you cancel two consecutive appointments then it is likely you will be discharged from our service. If you still require a review after this time then you will need to be re-referred.
Please contact us if you have any concerns regarding discharge from our service.

 What happens if I do not attend my appointment?

If you fail to attend your appointment and you have not contacted us to cancel then you will be discharged from the nutrition and dietetic service back to your referrer. A letter will be sent to them explaining that you have not attended.

Consent

At the start of a consultation a dietitian will check that you consent to the consultation. Please note that by accepting and logging onto the Attend Anywhere video calling service we automatically assume your consent.
It is hospital policy that all young people under the age of 16 years old should be accompanied by an adult to all appointments, in order to ensure that they are chaperoned appropriately. If this is not possible please call us in the number on the front of this leaflet to discuss your circumstances as soon as possible.
In addition, please note that a person with parental responsibility must attend the first appointment in order to give consent to treatment. If this is not possible please contact us on the number below so we can discuss your circumstances as soon as possible

Do I need to bring anything to my appointment?

  • please bring a list of your current medications
  • a recent weight and height (if possible) – if you are being seen face to face then a weight and height may be done at this time.
  • if you have been posted any questionnaires or food diaries, please complete them and give them/email to the dietitian. You may also want to keep a note off foods eaten over the past 3 days so it is easier when questioned by us.
  • there will be opportunity to go through any questions you may have so it might be useful to write these down before you attend

Referrals:

A referral can be made to our service via your GP, consultant, specialist nurse, speech and language therapist, or health visitor/school nursing team. If you feel you require a referral to our service then please speak with one of these health care professionals and request a referral.
If a referral has already been made then we will contact you in due course to advise what format the appointment will be (virtual or face to face) and when this will take place. You may also be offered a group session depending on the advice needed, these will be either face to face or via the Microsoft Teams platform.

Contact us

For all dietetic queries please call our department on 01473 704000, in office hours between 8am-4pm.
Messages can be left on the answerphone outside of office hours and the relevant person will get back to you, usually within 3 working days
Appointment enquiries: 01473 704001

Healthy eating advice

British Dietetic Association Main Website

British Dietetic Association Food Fact Sheets

Food Standards Agency

British Nutrition Foundation

Older People

Age UK

Contact the Elderly

Royal Voluntary Service

Food Delivery Schemes

Royal Voluntary Service Meals on Wheels

Wiltshire Farm Foods

Oak House Foods

Heart Health

British Heart Foundation

Heart UK

Weight Loss

Change 4 Life

Weight Wise

Diabetes

Diabetes UK

 

How to get here

View hospital directions

Clinics

Location

Nutrition and Dietetics clinics are at the North End of the hospital – entrance 15.

Contact

01473 704 000

Aldeburgh Hospital

How to get here

View hospital directions

Clinics

Location

Dietitians regularly visit this hospital.

Patients are screened on admission and referred to the dietitian if they are at high risk of malnutrition or require advice on therapeutic diets.

Bluebird Lodge

Dietitians regularly visit this hospital.

Patients are screened on admission and referred to the dietitian if they are at high risk of malnutrition or require advice on therapeutic diets.

How to get here

View hospital directions

Clacton Hospital

Dietitians regularly visit this hospital.

Patients are screened on admission and referred to the dietitian if they are at high risk of malnutrition or require advice on therapeutic diets.

How to get here

View hospital directions

Felixstowe Hospital

Dietitians regularly visit this hospital.

Patients are screened on admission and referred to the dietitian if they are at high risk of malnutrition or require advice on therapeutic diets.

How to get here

View hospital directions

Halstead Hospital

Dietitians regularly visit this hospital.

Patients are screened on admission and referred to the dietitian if they are at high risk of malnutrition or require advice on therapeutic diets.

How to get here

View hospital directions

Harwich Hospital

Dietitians regularly visit this hospital.

Patients are screened on admission and referred to the dietitian if they are at high risk of malnutrition or require advice on therapeutic diets.

How to get here

View hospital directions

In the community

Community services

The Ipswich and East Suffolk community team supports adults in their own home, sheltered accommodation, supported living, care homes, hospices and community hospitals.

We provide dietetic care plans for conditions including malnutrition, tube feeding and therapeutic diets.

In Colchester and North East Essex, the community support is provided by Anglian Community Enterprise.

Hospital outreach clinics

The Ipswich Hospital team hold clinics at

  • Stow Health Centre, Stowmarket
  • Framfield House, Woodbridge

Nutrition and dietetics

Our team of dietitians assess, diagnose and treat diet and nutrition problems.
We advise patients, helping them to make the right choices about food and nutrition.
We support adults and children in hospitals, clinics and in the community and work with nurses and doctors to meet patients’ nutritional needs.
We support a wide range of patients including those being treated for:

  • cystic fibrosis
  • kidney (renal) problems
  • cancer
  • stroke
  • diabetes
  • stomach and intestine disorders
  • inflammatory bowel diseases such as Crohns and Ulcerative Colitis
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