An estimated 90 percent of oncology patients in the United States are treated in outpatient cancer settings. Cancer patients receiving out-patient multi-modal treatment such as chemo-radiation, surgery and other interventions like immunotherapy are at risk for malnutrition. Treatment can often impair a patient’s ability to eat and drink adequately. Most patients receiving out-patient cancer care do not receive routine nutrition referrals, and when they are referred, there are limited standards for out-patient nutrition care across patient populations. Ear-ly nutrition screening and interventions can help minimize cancer treatment sequela and may improve overall outcomes. Clinical decision support (CDS) tools via the electronic medical record have been proposed to improve patient outcomes across various measures, however, data are lacking in the current cancer and nutrition literature. MCI shares this project to highlight an electronic Malnutrition Screening Tool (E-MST) implemented in the out-patient oncology setting to identify patients with malnutrition and those at risk for developing malnutrition. The Information Technology (IT) team embedded the E-MST into the electronic medical record system using the existing clinical information platform. Medical staff endorse ease of use as a top factors when providing feedback about the E-MST, and found that it was a useful part of the nutrition care process during treatment. Monthly reports are generated to measure MST screening en-counters, associated nutrition referrals and assessments completed. The electronic screening has proven to be an effective addition to patient care at MCI. Identification of these patients provides nutrition professionals with the opportunity to conduct more detailed assessments and interventions. Early nutrition interventions delivered through the MST pathway have the potential to minimize treatment delays, unplanned hospitalizations, salvage nutrition support, and reduce the cost of care.

Publication Date


Presented At:

14th Annual BHSF Research Conference

Content Type


Open Access

Available to all.