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Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center - Houston, Texas

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Houston VA Wins Clinical Nutrition Award

March 11, 2013

The American Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition (A.S.P.E.N.) recently named the Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center (MEDVAMC) as one of the recipients of its 2013 Clinical Nutrition Team of Distinction award.

“We are honored by this recognition of our interdisciplinary clinical nutrition practice,” said Medical Center Director Adam C. Walmus, M.H.A., M.A., F.A.C.H.E. “I am extremely proud our staff members support each other and are focused on our mission to provide the highest quality health care possible to our Veterans.”
Organized in April 2008, the MEDVAMC Nutrition Support Team is composed of a strong interdisciplinary group that includes Maria Velez, M.D.; Certified Nutrition Support Dietitians Renee Walker, M.S., R.D., C.N.S.C., Katie Schwartz, M.S., R.D., C.N.S.C., Alicia Merritt, M.S., R.D., C.N.S.C., C.S.O., and Holly Dittmar, M.S., R.D., C.N.S.C.; Board Certified Nutrition Support Pharmacists Nicole Keller, Pharm.D., B-C.N.S.P. and Anne M. Tucker, Pharm.D., B-C.N.S.P.; and Nurses Lissy Joseph, R.N., B.S.N., Sy Reeker, R.N., M.S.N., and Esther Mims, R.N., M.S.N.

The Nutrition Support Team participates in nutrition support rounds, formulary selection, policy revision, research, educational development, and development and implementation of new and updated guidelines. The members also round daily on parenteral nutrition patients, assist with ordering, and work to reduce metabolic and infectious complications.

The A.S.P.E.N. award identifies and elevates the stature of interdisciplinary nutrition care within an institution or agency and externally in local communities. Clinical nutrition teams, as defined for this award, consist of an identified interdisciplinary group of practitioners with a member from each of four disciplines: dietetics, medicine, nursing, and pharmacy.

“The Clinical Nutrition Team of Distinction Award honors those hard-working teams who are at their patients’ side each and every day,” said Tom Jaksic, M.D., Ph.D., A.S.P.E.N. president. “Exceptional patient care is the heart and soul of everything we do. So, this highly-respected award category truly compliments our other prestigious clinical nutrition awards and we are thrilled to select Michael E. DeBakey Veterans Affairs Medical Center as one of our inaugural awardees.” 

Founded in 1976, A.S.P.E.N. is an interdisciplinary organization whose members are involved in the provision of clinical nutrition therapies, including parenteral and enteral nutrition. With more than 5,500 members from around the world, A.S.P.E.N. is a community of dietitians, nurses, pharmacists, physicians, scientists, students, and other health professionals from every facet of nutrition support clinical practice, research, and education.