International Dysphagia Diet Standardisation Initiative (IDDSI) introduced new dysphagia standards frrom 1 May 2019.

Dysphagia is a swallowing disorder that includes problems with chewing, sucking and swallowing food or drinks. When left unmanaged dysphagia can have adverse effects such as malnutrition, dehydration, choking, and pneumonia.

Currently, in Australia we follow the Australian Standards for Texture Modified Foods and Fluids which were introduced in 2007. Internationally there has been no consistent standard for modified texture foods and drinks, for use by people living with dysphagia and require modified textures

The development of international standards will address this particular issue and provide a common language that can be used for technical, cultural, professional and non-professional uses, which is person-focused.

Making the change as seamless as possible for people living with dysphagia requires coordination between a number of stakeholders including hospitals, aged care facilities, product manufacturers, distributers, pharmacies, health care workers and educational institutions.

In line with the adoption of the IDDSI, Members will demonstrate that they understand and apply the requirement of the Quality Standards, review and monitor the application of the outcomes and adjust their practices based on continuous improvement

Standard 1

Consumer Outcome: “I am treated with dignity and respect and can maintain my identity. I can make informed choices about my care and services and live the life I choose”

Organisational Statement: The organisation: (a) has a culture of inclusion and respect for consumers and (b) supports consumers to exercise choice and independence and (c) respects consumer privacy

Standard 2

Consumer Outcome: “I am a partner in ongoing assessment and planning that helps me get the care and services I need for my health and well-being”

Organisational Statement: “The organisation undertakes initial and ongoing assessment and planning for care and services in partnership with the consumer. Assessments and planning has a focus on optimising health and well-being in accordance with eh consumer’s needs, goals and preferences”

Standard 4

Consumer Outcome: “I get the services and supports for daily living that are important for my health and well-being and that enable me to do the things I want to do”

Organisational Statement “The organisation provides safe and effective services and supports for daily ling that optimizes the consumer’s independence, health, well-being and quality of life.”

IDDSI  is pleased to provide some suggestions for the types of tasks and timeframes needed for implementation of the IDDSI framework.

Please find below a 12-month calendar of events.

There are six key tasks with subheadings below each. The key tasks include:

  1. Becoming familiar with the IDDSI: Website and resources
  2. Forming IDDSI Implementation teams: Suggestions on cross sector stakeholder consultations and teams
  3. Determining IDDSI implementation tasks and personalising your own ‘IDDSI Implementation Calendar’
  4. ‘Spread the word’: Education about IDDSI for key stakeholders
  5. ‘Check out the food and drinks’: Map existing products to determine their IDDSI label and level using IDDSI audit tools; developing menu items and recipes etc.
  6. Clinical communication: including review of clinical assessment tools, chart entries, and consumer education material.

IDDSI will be updating resources regularly via their website.