Nutrition and Dietetic Service (Adult & Paediatric) - Royal Oldham

Registered dietitians are experts in nutrition and translate research into practical and easy to follow advice.

Good nutrition is important as it helps us to stay healthy, but it also aids recovery and is therefore important for all our patients.

Most inpatients are seen by the dietitian because they need ‘nutritional support’ due to having a reduced appetite, loss of weight or muscle strength or because they are unable to feed themselves due to their medical condition, disease or surgery.  The dietitian provides individualised nutritional advice and support.  This can include recommending high calorie foods, nutritional supplements or tube feeding.  

The dietitians see adults and children as either hospital inpatients, outpatients or within groups providing advice on a range of different diets.   

The dietitians see patients who ……

  • Have digestive problems or medical conditions such as inflammatory bowel disease or coeliac disease (gluten-free diet)
  • Need advice after colorectal surgery
  • Have an allergy or intolerance to certain foods
  • Have been diagnosed with a medical condition, such as diabetes or liver disease
  • Require a feeding tube for additional nutrition if they are unable to eat normally due to their illness or following surgery.

Dietetic treatment includes a confidential assessment of lifestyle factors, nutritional status, medical history and dietary intake to ensure that appropriate, understandable and practical dietary advice is given that is agreeable to you.   We aim to optimise recovery and long-term health through diet. 

The dietitians also act as advisors to the Oldham Care Organisation as part of The Northern Care Alliance NHS Group on nutritional standards for the nutritional care of our patients.  They work with the Catering Service to ensure the hospital menus are reviewed and meet the needs of our patients.

You will be seen by a qualified dietitian who is registered with the Health and Care Professions Council.  The dietitian will assess and develop an appropriate nutritional treatment plan with you as described above.  You may also be seen by a dietetic assistant who works with the dietitian to review your treatment plan.

The department is linked to Chester University and provides clinical placements for their student dietitians.  You may see a student dietitian who is being supervised by a qualified dietitian.  By allowing them to observe or participate in your care, you play an important role in their clinical training.  Should you prefer not to be seen by a student, please inform us when you make your appointment.  This will not affect the standard of care you receive.

Our Trust policy states that we can only use approved interpreters, therefore if you require an interpreter, please inform the department when you arrange your appointment.

Whilst on the ward the Trust caters for people requiring a special diet, e.g. gluten-free.  These are available upon request so please inform the nursing staff on your admission.  If however you have complex dietary needs, e.g. multiple allergies, you can contact the department prior to your admission so that we can liaise with the catering department for you.

If you are being fed via a tube in the community we will provide a feeding pump and feed for you on the ward.  You do not need to bring in your equipment and feed from home.

For outpatient appointments, our secretary will advise you if your appointment will be via telephone or face to face.  You will receive a letter and information leaflet about your appointment.  It may be helpful, before the appointment, to think about any questions about your diet you want answered.  The dietitian may provide some written information to support the advice given and changes agreed.  You will also be given a contact number in case you have further queries.

You are welcome to be accompanied by a friend or relative – especially if they do most of the cooking or shopping, or if their support is important to you. 

Everything you talk to the dietitian about is strictly confidential; however the dietitian may need to discuss treatments with your doctor or other healthcare professions involved in your care.

A follow-up appointment may be arranged to review your progress, answer any further questions and, if necessary, make alterations to your recommended diet.

If you are attending your clinic appointment, car parking is available, a pay and display scheme operates.  At peak times you may experience difficulty parking, therefore, please allow sufficient time to get to your appointment.  Designated disabled parking spaces are available but are limited.

Ambulance transport is available if you have a medical need that does not allow you to travel by yourself.  If you require transport, please contact your GP practice, who will arrange this for you.

The Nutrition and Dietetics team work 08:00am to 16:00pm Monday to Friday.

The service accepts referrals only from Northern Care Alliance health care professionals for adults and children requiring dietary advice or interventions for the treatment or prevention of their medical condition.  If your doctor or nurse thinks you would benefit from seeing a dietitian, they will refer you directly to the service.  If you think it would be of benefit to see a dietitian, ask your hospital doctor or nurse to refer you.  The department is unable to accept self-referrals. 

If you are under the care of a GP rather than a Northern Care Alliance health care professional, you should be referred to the local community Nutrition and Dietetic Service by your GP. 

We have a high demand for our outpatient appointments so please contact us as soon as possible if you think you will be unable to attend.  This will enable us to offer the appointment time to another patient.  If you do not attend your appointment you will be discharged from the service and will need another referral if you wish to make a new appointment.

For information on how to train to become a dietitian visit the British Dietetic Association Homepage | British Dietetic Association (BDA)

The British Dietetic Association has several information leaflets ‘Food Facts’ to help with general healthy eating alongside other health related topics.  They are available at Food Facts | British Dietetic Association (BDA)

Dietitians are the only nutrition professionals to be regulated by law and are governed by an ethical code to ensure that they always work to the highest standard.  Anyone working as a dietitian must be registered with the Health and Care Professions Council as the title ‘dietitian’ is protected by law.  To check if your dietitian is registered or for more details visit Check the Register and find a registered health and care professional | (

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