Govt launches review of NHS food

Hospital food review announced by government

Hospital food review announced by government

The quality of hospital food in our local hospitals will be considered under a new national review which is backed by Bake Off's Prue Leith. But the government hopes - not for the first time - that, this will soon change.

The Department of Health and Social Care has launched a review of NHS food in a development that could present new opportunities for fresh produce firms to supply hospitals.

The food review will be chaired by the former head of the Hospital Caterers Association and catering lead for Taunton and Somerset NHS Foundation Trust, Philip Shelley.

"I want our NHS to be able to make the most of the great variety of fresh, seasonal produce available in this country to provide appetising options which contain all a patient needs to help them on the road to recovery".

The Prime Minister sat down with master baker Prue for breakfast on Friday morning to have a discussion about listeria and NHS reform.

"Guaranteeing hospitals serve nutritional, tasty and fresh meals will not only aid patient recovery, but also fuel staff and visitors as they care for loved ones and the vulnerable".

Yet another celebrity chef has been recruited to front a Government campaign to improve hospital food after six patients died after eating bought-in NHS sandwiches and salads.

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"I'm delighted that at long last Downing Street and the Department of Health have made a decision to do something about it. This review will ensure it remains the standard-bearer for healthy choices".

"Nursing staff won't see improvements in hospital catering if they can't even take time to eat a proper meal on shift without putting patients in harm's way. I'm delighted we've assembled a first-rate group to drive this agenda".

It will look at hospitals that now have high food standards to see what other NHS trusts can learn from them.Hospital caterers, patient groups, suppliers and kitchen staff will be consulted - as well as national bodies such as the Soil Association and National Caterers Association to look at how Trusts can benefit more from local and fresh produce.

In 2011, celebrity chef James Martin said, after helping to reinvigorate the staff and menus at Scarborough General Hospital in North Yorkshire, that he was looking to work with six others in 2012.

Patricia Marquis, RCN Director for England said: "More than six years ago the then-health secretary said hospitals should serve food that is of high quality and healthy".

Heston Blumenthal also worked on a project to improve hospital meals in collaboration with the University of Reading and the Royal Berkshire Hospital in 2010.

Leith said millions was wasted on "unpalatable" hospital food.

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