Alison Smith

Herts Valleys Clinical Commissioning Group, Herts Valleys Clinical Commissioning Group

Alison has been qualified as a Registered Dietitian for more than 25 years, and since 2013 has worked as a Prescribing Support Dietitian within Clinical Commissioning Groups and latterly an Integrated Care Board. Her role focusses on appropriate prescribing of nutrition products, with a particular remit for prevention, identification and appropriate treatment of malnutrition using a food-based approach.

Alison’s professional interests include malnutrition, hydration, nutrition screening, care homes, frailty, sarcopenia, dysphagia, dementia, pressure injury and end of life.

Alison has been a committee member of the Older People Specialist Group of the British Dietetic Association (BDA) for many years. In 2021 Alison was made a Fellow of the BDA for her services to the profession.

Alison is a judge for the National Association for Care Catering (NACC) awards and Care Chef of the year. She is also chair of both the Department of Health and Social Care Advisory Committee on Borderline Substances (ACBS) and the PrescQIPP Nutrition Virtual Professional Group.

Presentation at the Skin health and wound care for older people study day

How nutrition affects the skin health of older people


  • Pressure injury is more likely to occur in people whose nutritional status is impaired
  • Low body weight and unplanned weight loss are not normal aspects of ageing, but are often perceived to be normal and inevitable
  • Evidence base for nutritional needs for pressure injury prevention and treatment are not particularly strong
  • Good nutrition can make a significant difference to older peoples health, strength and quality of life, but good nutrition in older people may look different from good nutrition in the younger adult population

Presentation at the Society of Tissue Viability 2022 Conference

What is healthy eating for older adults in Care Homes?


After attending this session, persons will be able to:

  • Understand the value and benefits of food and drinks in supporting nutritional needs
  • Appreciate the importance of adopting a ‘whole home approach’ to supporting care homes
  • Recognise how this accords with prevention and healing of pressure injury


We talk a lot about nutrition and hydration in healthcare but sometimes forget that nutrition and hydration will, and should, come mainly from the food and drinks that are consumed. This applies to older adults as much as younger adults and also applies to many conditions including pressure injury.

This presentation will consider how the nutrition and hydration needs in older adults, particularly those resident in care homes, can and should be supported by provision of appropriate food and drinks. The presentation will also consider how care homes can best be supported by all healthcare staff to embed good nutrition and hydration into everyday practice.