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ARAMARK Healthcare Launches New Program to Help Patients and Hospitals with Nutritional Therapy.

PHILADELPHIA -- ARAMARK Healthcare today announced the launch of its Medical Nutrition Therapy (MNT) Toolkit to help its Registered Dietitians (RDs) partner with hospitals to improve patient care through outpatient nutritional counseling provided under Medicare Part B.

"In today's healthcare environment, we are working very hard to introduce innovative ways that improve patient outcomes for our hospital partners," said Tim Campbell, President of ARAMARK Healthcare. "This program is an easy to understand process that makes setting up an outpatient MNT program more effective."

ARAMARK Healthcare's program includes resources from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) that outline Medicare basics and offer quick links to the appropriate documentation for Medicare MNT billing processes. The program and toolkit also incorporates American Dietetic Association resources that outline regulations, guidelines and descriptions of CMS approved Current Procedural Terminology codes for MNT services.

Additionally, resources are provided that summarize how RD Medicare providers implement the MNT benefit and how to measure and demonstrate the financial return on investment.

"Medical Nutrition Therapy provided by registered dietitians is an essential component of comprehensive health care that prevents or alters the course of diseases including diabetes, obesity, hypertension, disorders of lipid metabolism, heart failure, osteoporosis, celiac disease and chronic kidney diseasem," said Judith C. Rodriquez, President of the American Dietetic Association.

Medical Nutrition Therapy provided by Registered Dietitians includes nutritional diagnostic therapy and counseling services. Medicare Part B covers MNT for diabetes, kidney disease and post-renal transplants. Patients must be referred for Medicare MNT by a physician and services must be provided by an RD or nutritional professional. Medicare covers three hours of MNT in the beneficiary's first year and two hours each subsequent year. If the patient's condition or treatment changes, additional MNT can be ordered by the physician. Hospital outpatient departments can bill MNT services using their National Provider Identifier if RDs reassign the benefits to the hospital.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics in its 2010-2011 Occupational Outlook Handbook notes that hospitals will continue to require a large number of dietitians to provide MNT. ARAMARK Healthcare has a strong clinical nutrition practice as one of the world's largest employers of RDs, with more than 750. Much of the company's professional development and programmatic strategies are aligned through its corporate partnership with the industry's leading professional organization, the American Dietetic Association.

About ARAMARK Healthcare

ARAMARK Healthcare is a leader in providing best-in-class non-clinical services that are essential to healthcare delivery. Understanding that clinical excellence and the environment are interdependent, ARAMARK Healthcare directly impacts the entire healthcare continuum - patient, employee, nurse and physician satisfaction, operational efficiency and service excellence. Through its facilities, food and clinical technology services, ARAMARK Healthcare helps more than 1,000 hospitals and senior living facilities deliver the optimal experience for patients and residents, their families, and the physicians, nurses and staff who care for them. For more information, visit www.aramarkhealthcare.com.

About the American Dietetic Association

The American Dietetic Association is the world's largest organization of food and nutrition professionals. ADA is committed to improving the nation's health and advancing the profession of dietetics through research, education and advocacy. Visit the American Dietetic Association at www.eatright.org.
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Publication:Business Wire
Geographic Code:1U2PA
Date:Nov 5, 2010
Words:600
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