Nutrition Assessment & Intervention: Improving Patient Outcomes

Increasing evidence has consistently linked many chronic diseases like type 2 diabetes and obesity with a patient’s nutritional status. However, even as rates of obesity and type 2 diabetes continue to skyrocket, clinicians are reportedly spending less time than ever talking to patients about nutrition, citing lack of time, training, and optimism that patients can make lifestyle changes. Research suggests that clinicians don’t feel comfortable, confident, or adequately prepared to give nutrition advice. In the 2010 Nutrition Education in U.S. Medical Schools National Survey, only 25% of respondents indicated a dedicated nutrition course was required; further, only 27% of the schools met the minimum 25 required hours set by the National Academy of Sciences. In addition, nutrition education typically occurs in the first 2 years of medical school when the basic sciences are being emphasized; nutrition does not appear to get much emphasis during the clinical years when nutrition concepts and skills could be applied more directly to clinical problem-solving (1-5).

Despite the well-known relationship between nutrition and the prevention and treatment of disease, practicing clinicians continually rate their nutrition knowledge and skills as inadequate (6). In the summer of 2013, under the auspices of its Nutrition Scientific Committee, AACE conducted a membership-wide online survey to assess the interest in and need for learning opportunities tied to enhancing patient nutritional care. Of the more than 1,000 members responding to the survey, 502 (53%) indicated a desire for AACE-sponsored hospital nutrition training, and 866 (85.1%) expressed an interest in outpatient nutrition training. More importantly, when asked if adequacy of nutrition training was a barrier in their own practices, a resounding 70% responded “yes.” This CME/CE program of online case-based modules was designed by the AACE Nutritional Scientific Committee members to help fill this gap in clinician nutritional training and enhance their skills and knowledge in this area of practice.

Full needs assessment is listed in CME Information within the course.

The American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE) is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

The American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE) designates this enduring material for a maximum of 1.00 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™.  Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

Provided by the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists.

For questions regarding this CME activity, please contact the AACE CME Department through the Contact Us webform or

Copyright 2015, AACE. All rights reserved. No part of this enduring material may be reproduced or transmitted in any other form or by any other means, electronic or mechanical, without first obtaining written permission from AACE.

Target Audience

Endocrinologists, PCPs, other physicians, and interested healthcare providers.

Learning Objectives

  • Develop appropriate treatment strategies for an enterally-fed patient with type 2 diabetes.
  • Discuss prevention and treatment approaches to re-feeding syndrome.
  • Recognize malnutrition and evaluate nutrition risk in critically ill patients using the subjective global assessment (SGA) as a useful means for nutrition assessment.
Additional information
Available for MOC Points?: 
Practice Area: 
Course summary
Available credit: 
  • 1.00 AMA
  • 1.00 Attendance
Course opens: 
Course expires: 

Elise M. Brett, MD, FACP, ECNU; Daniel L. Hurley, MD, FACE; Vin Tangpricha, MD, PhD, FACE; M. Molly McMahon, MD, FACE; Manpreet S. Mundi, MD; Susan E. Williams, MS, RD, MD, FACN, FACP

Available Credit

  • 1.00 AMA
  • 1.00 Attendance

Accreditation Period

Course opens: 
Course expires: 
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Required Hardware/software

Users will need a computer with an internet connection, Internet Explorer 8.x or higher, the latest versions of Firefox, Safari, or Chrome, or any other W3C standards compliant browser, Adobe Flash Player and/or an HTML5 capable browser may be required for video or audio playback and occasionally other additional software may be required such as PowerPoint or Adobe Acrobat Reader.