What is hospital food really like?

Reviewing hospital food in Calderdale and Huddersfield

Hospital food has an image problem and hospitals in the UK have worked hard to turn this stereotype around to improve the eating experience for patients. Nutrition and hydration play a vital role in recovering from illness as well as maintaining health, so when Healthwatch Kirklees received complaints about the food quality in Dewsbury and District Hospital, we wanted to look into the wider issue.

Following meetings with Public Health, Calderdale & Huddersfield Trust, and Calderdale CCG, Healthwatch Kirklees were asked to research and analyse patient comments on hospital food. This research was conducted at Huddersfield Royal Infirmary and Calderdale Royal Hospital by a team of Healthwatch Kirklees advisors who surveyed patients as well as speaking to visitors and staff. In total 141 patients were interviewed, providing answers and opinions on a wide range of food-related issues.

This research, along with in-house engagement by Huddersfield Royal Infirmary and a patient-led assessment of the care environment visit (PLACE Survey) in May 2014, enabled Healthwatch Kirklees to develop a balanced view of patient’s experience of food at these hospitals.

Our overriding impression was that patients were very happy with the food that they received in hospital.

We have in partnership with the Trust agreed areas for improvement and the Trust will complete an action plan to address these issues. We will revisit the Trust in 2015 and provide independent real time patient feedback that will contribute to the Trusts 2014/15 CQUIN target to better understand and improve hospital food.

You can download and read our full report below:

Patient Experience of Hospital Food at Calderdale & Huddersfield NHS Foundation Trust