Tallahassee, Fla. (WWSB) - Agriculture Commissioner, Nikki Fried issued a cabinet proclamation recognizing Oct. 5 to Oct. 9 as Malnutrition Awareness Week in Florida.
Malnutrition Awareness Week is a national multi-organization campaign aimed at educating consumers on the importance of good nutrition, early detection, treatment of malnutrition and encouraging Americans to discuss their nutritional status with healthcare professionals.
“Malnutrition is a growing crisis in our nation, which continues to be exacerbated by economic disparities, food insecurity, and the COVID-19 pandemic,” shared Commissioner Fried. “I’m proud to proclaim this week as Malnutrition Awareness Week in the state of Florida. It’s crucial that we raise awareness and help educate Floridians on the dangers of malnutrition and its devastating impact on children, adults, and especially the elderly.”
During the COVID-19 pandemic, FDACS (Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services) and Commissioner Fried made sure children had nutritious meals available during school closures, quickly approving over 4,200 feeding locations that served over 72 million meals from March through July, and activating the 2-1-1 phone and text line where Floridians could find free meals for kids.
“Patients with malnutrition are more likely to experience longer hospital stays, higher hospital costs, and higher in-patient deaths,” stated Ainsley Malone, American Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition (ASPEN) Clinical Specialist and Nutrition Support Dietitian. “Malnutrition is a largely preventable and treatable disease — that’s why ASPEN started Malnutrition Awareness Week in 2012. We are delighted that Commissioner Fried has proclaimed October 5 - 9 as Malnutrition Awareness Week.”