Prisons, dietetic services, research and training : win win

Hannan-Jones, Mary T. (2010) Prisons, dietetic services, research and training : win win. Journal of the American Dietetic Association, 110(9), A65-A65.

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Learning Outcome: Gain knowledge in the area of dietetic training in Australia and the benefits of collaborative partnerships between government and universities to achieve improvements in dietetic service delivery, evidenced based practice, and student placements.

Prisoners have high rates of chronic disease, however dietetic services and research in this sector is limited. Securing high quality professional practice placements for dietetic training in Australia is competitive, and prisons provide exciting opportunities. Queensland University of Technology (QUT) has a unique twenty year partnership with Queensland Corrective Services (QCS) with a service learning model placing final year dietetic students within prisons. Building on this partnership, in 2007 a new joint position was funded to establish dietetic services to over 5500 prisoners and support viable best practice dietetic education. Evaluation of the past three years of this partnership has shown an expansion of QUT student placements in Queensland prisons, with a third of final year students each undertaking 120 hours of foodservice management practicum. Student evaluations of placement over this period are much higher than the University average. Through the joint position student projects have been targeted on strategic areas to support nutrition and dietetic policy and practice. Projects have been broadened from menu reviews to more comprehensive quality improvement and dietetic research activities, with all student learning activities transferrable to other foodservice settings. Student practice in the prisons has been extended beyond foodservice management to include group education and dietetic counseling. For QCS, student placements have equated to close to a full-time dietitian position, with nutrition policy now being implemented as an outcome of this support. This innovative partnership has achieved a sustainable student placement model, supported research, whilst delivering dietetic services to a difficult to access group.

Funding Disclosure: None

Impact and interest:

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ID Code: 51103
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Additional Information: Paper presented in "American Dietetic Association Food and Nutrition Conference and Expo, Boston, Mass, 6-9 November 2010
Keywords: prison, food, nutrition, training, correctional, dietetic, student
DOI: 10.1016/j.jada.2010.06.241
ISSN: 0002-8223
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000) > NUTRITION AND DIETETICS (111100) > Nutrition and Dietetics not elsewhere classified (111199)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Schools > School of Exercise & Nutrition Sciences
Deposited On: 28 Jun 2012 00:48
Last Modified: 24 Jul 2012 03:25

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