On the effects of continued nutritional therapy after hospital discharge in patients at risk of malnutrition

Malnutrition is a strong and independent risk factor for mortality, re-hospitalization and functional deterioration, especially in elderly, polymorbid medical patients. The EFFORT study published in 2019 (link here), which included over 2,000 patients in eight Swiss hospitals, showed that nutrition therapy during hospitalization significantly reduced the risk of complications and mortality. However, nutrition therapy discontinued after discharged from the hospital. The long-term follow-up of the former study showed no long-term benefits of inpatient nutrition therapy alone. The mortality rate after 6 months and 3 years of follow-up was significantly increased (20% and 60%, respectively). There is a lack of data investigating whether continuing nutritional therapy has a sustained effect on clinical outcomes in patients at nutritional risk. A large-scale, meaningful study is urgently needed to answer the questions of whether internal medicine patients at nutritional risk have a sustained benefit from long-term nutritional therapy and why/how nutritional therapy affects disease progression


Financial support

  • Department of Diabetes, Endocrinology, Nutritional Medicine and Metabolism, Inselspital, Bern University Hospital and University of Bern 
  • Industry Grant


  • Department of General Internal Medicine, Bern University Hospital 
  • Cantonal hospital Aarau
  • Cantonal hospital Luzern
  • Cantonal hospital St. Gallen
  • Cantonal hospital Thurgau
  • Hospital Burgdorf
  • Hospital Lachen
  • Hospital Thun
  • Hospital Zofingen

Principal Investigator

  • Prof. Dr. med. Zeno Stanga
  • Prof. Dr. med. Philipp Schütz, Universitätsklinik für Allgemeine Innere Medizin und Notfallmedizin, Kantonspital Aarau