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Care home COVID-19 dietary advice

Care home residents with COVID-19 may need extra support with nutrition and hydration. This may be both during and after illness.
COVID-19 can cause mild or severe symptoms. This can affect what residents eat and drink. Some common issues that can reduce intake are:

  • reduced or total loss of smell or taste
  • metallic or salty taste in mouth
  • shortness of breath
  • extreme tiredness and muscle weakness
  • loss of appetite and feeling full more quickly

Our eating well and building yourself up after COVID-19 leaflet (PDF, 644 KB) provides lots of useful information and top tips to help you support residents with COVID-19.

Malnutrition screening

The elderly and malnourished have worse outcomes and higher risk of death from COVID-19. A third of care home residents are at risk of malnutrition. Residents should be screened monthly for malnutrition risk using the malnutrition universal screening tool, also known as MUST. This will enable residents at risk of malnutrition to be identified and then treated.


We have produced a free resource pack and training on identifying and treating malnutrition in care homes. If you would like to access this training email our care home medicines team.

COVID-19 nutritional care for care homes video

This video provides nutritional information on managing residents who have, or are recovering from, COVID-19.

The leaflets below provide more information on the 1,2,3 approach referred to in the video:

The links referred to in the video are available below:

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