Congratulations to Sally McCray, winner of the Chester Goodsell Memorial Award 2023. Sally earned the award for her outstanding contribution to the use of technology in the field of evidence-based nutrition analysis for health and wellbeing.
About Sally McCray
Sally McCray is the Director of Dietetics and Foodservices at Mater Group, holds an Honorary Associate Professor position at Mater Research Institute – University of Queensland and an Honorary Adjunct Assistant Professor with Bond University, Faculty of Health Sciences and Medicine. She has worked clinically in several hospitals publicly and privately in Australia as well as in Canada as an RD.
At Mater she is responsible for the strategic and operational direction of a large and diverse team of research, professional and operational staff across Mater Group in Queensland. Her research interests are innovative foodservice models and management of malnutrition, and she has published in national and international peer-reviewed journals. Her current focus is utilising software solutions and data analytics to harness the power of data to inform decisions, improve operational efficiencies and achieve clinical dietetics excellence across her teams.
To this end, she has led the recent design and implementation of the electronic malnutrition solution at Mater to improve the identification and subsequent management of malnourished and at risk patients. This work was published in 2022.
About Sally’s work related to the award
Routine malnutrition risk screening of hospital patients is critical for optimal clinical care and part of the National Australian Hospital Standards. Identification of malnutrition also ensures suitable reimbursement for hospitals to adequately treat these high-risk patients. However, as per recent literature, timely and accurate screening, assessment and coding of malnutrition remains suboptimal.
Between 2018-2022, Sally McCray and Mater Group worked with their software vendor to develop, integrate and implement an electronic malnutrition solution (eMS) into their pre-existing malnutrition screening and assessment process to overcome barriers to optimal screening of patients and enable improvements in identification of at risk and malnourished patients across their hospitals.
The use of this eMS has resulted in significant improvements in the rates of patients identified, treated and coded with malnutrition by over 40%, whilst the staff time taken to screen patients has reduced by 60%. In addition, it allows patients to be identified, screened and assessed in a more timely way, enabling suitable treatment to be directed quickly to those patients most at risk allowing the appropriate allocation of resources facilitating value based care. Staff reported 100% adoption of the solution indicating satisfaction with this technology-assisted process. Use of the eMS has also enabled data analytics capability to facilitate automated, efficient and realtime malnutrition process and prevalence auditing to inform process performance and patient risk with a 95% reduction in staff time taken to audit.
This single digital solution for the management of malnutrition combined with the automation of auditing has demonstrated significant improvements in the identification and treatment of at risk and malnourished patients at Mater as well as improved efficient use of valuable staff resources. This work was published in the Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics in 2022.
This solution has the potential to benefit many hospitals around Australia and internationally through integration into existing malnutrition screening and assessment processes and result in better identification and treatment of malnourished patients within hospitals globally.
About the Chester Goodsell Memorial Award
This new Dietitians Australia Award, inaugurated in 2022, honours the contributions of the late Chester Goodsell (1956-2020), founder of Xyris and creator of the FoodWorks nutrition analysis software, the leading software package for nutrition analysis in Australasia.
Chester considered his life’s work to be developing innovative nutrition analysis solutions for the good of all. Thousands of dietitians and nutritionists in Australia and New Zealand, as well as the general public, have benefited from his passion for using technology to make accurate and empowering nutrition analysis readily available.
The Chester Goodsell Memorial Award is a tribute to his life and his contribution to the dietetics profession and to public health.
The award is presented at the annual Dietitians Australia awards ceremony, usually during the Dietitians Australia conference. The successful recipient receives a financial contribution as well as a year’s subscription to Foodworks.online.
This award is proudly sponsored by Xyris Pty Ltd and Rob Clifton-Steele.
Do you want to nominate for 2024? Find out more