Supporting safe and enjoyable meals

Having access to mealtimes that are safe and enjoyable is critical – it minimises the risk of choking and serious health problems; and improves a person’s safety and quality of life.

NDIS providers have obligations to ensure quality and safety in the provision of mealtime management.

Following our Scoping review of causes and contributors to deaths of people with disability in Australia, we developed the new Mealtime Management NDIS Practice Standard in consultation with stakeholders to explicitly address quality and safety in mealtime supports.

A number of training modules and resources are available to support registered NDIS provider compliance with the NDIS Practice Standard for Mealtime Management.

eLearning module for NDIS workers

Supporting safe and enjoyable meals is a new elearning module aims to improve NDIS worker awareness and understanding of how to provide safe and enjoyable mealtime assistance to people with disability.

The short module will look at:

  • Mealtime assistance and the Mealtime Plan
  • Swallowing, and symptoms of swallowing difficulty
  • Planning food and food texture modifications
  • Mealtime positioning and assistive technology

Four topics in the module will provide information, tips, scenarios and actions that can be taken to reduce the risks associated with mealtimes and provide a safe and enjoyable environment for people with disability.

Access the Supporting safe and enjoyable meals module here.

Resources

Guidance for NDIS providers and workers is available in our Practice Alerts section on the following related topics:

The resources are available in several formats including short animations, quick reference guides and the original text-based, short research summaries. Easy Reads will also be available soon.

There is also a video in the ‘Make is known, make it better’ videos series, and a corresponding poster (coming soon), that addresses the importance of safety during mealtimes.

Make it known, make it better – NDIS Code of Conduct: Deliver services competently

Other resources and training modules on mealtime support

The Disability Research Network at the University of Technology Sydney, through an Australian Government grant, has produced a suite of resources and training modules called 'Co-Creating Safe and Enjoyable Meals for People with Swallowing Disability'.

The resources and training are designed to support people with swallowing difficulties in their mealtime decisions and mealtime assistance needs, and promote the co-creation of safe and enjoyable meals.

Visit the website www.enjoysafemeals.com to find out more.