Developing a valid meal assessment tool for hospital patients

Hannan-Jones, Mary & Capra, Sandra (2017) Developing a valid meal assessment tool for hospital patients. Appetite, 108, pp. 68-73.

[img] PDF (350kB)
Administrators only | Request a copy from author
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial No Derivatives 4.0.

View at publisher


Patients’ perspectives of meal items are critical in supporting effective decisions about meal provision in hospitals. The objective of this research was to develop a valid meal assessment tool (MAT), to quickly and accurately assess patient’s views on meal items, for ultimate use in a large multi-centre trial.

Nine iterations of the meal assessment tool were tested for content and construct validity in a large acute care hospital to determine wording, number scale and physical orientation for responses. Patients were interviewed to assess content validity, ease of completion, timing and assistance requirement. Following expert feedback, the resulting tool consisted of a 7 point scale measuring three meal components (meat, starch and vegetable), with ratings for flavour and taste combined, appearance and quality. Measures of overall satisfaction, meal expectation, age and gender were included for direct comparability with the valid published Acute Care Hospital Foodservice Patient Satisfaction Questionnaire (ACHFPSQ).

Three hundred and four surveys were completed in the development process (77% response), 53% male, mean age 56 years. Best completion rates were by interview with completion times of 2-5 minutes. The tool was then made available in a large multi-centre meal assessment project (n=14,500) and was able to detect differences between variations of the same meal and between the same ingredient prepared in alternative ways.

The MAT proved successful in discriminating meal components in terms of quality, taste and appearance and is useful for those planning and assessing meals in a variety of healthcare settings.

Impact and interest:

Citation counts are sourced monthly from Scopus and Web of Science® citation databases.

These databases contain citations from different subsets of available publications and different time periods and thus the citation count from each is usually different. Some works are not in either database and no count is displayed. Scopus includes citations from articles published in 1996 onwards, and Web of Science® generally from 1980 onwards.

Citations counts from the Google Scholar™ indexing service can be viewed at the linked Google Scholar™ search.

ID Code: 99494
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Additional URLs:
Keywords: meal assessment tool, quality management, food service, patient satisfaction, benchmarking, menu planning
DOI: 10.1016/j.appet.2016.09.025
ISSN: 0195-6663
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000) > NUTRITION AND DIETETICS (111100)
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 > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Schools > School of Exercise & Nutrition Sciences
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2016 Elsevier Ltd.
Deposited On: 22 Sep 2016 22:22
Last Modified: 27 Sep 2016 12:18

Export: EndNote | Dublin Core | BibTeX

Repository Staff Only: item control page