Coronavirus, A word from ESPEN

The COVID-19 pandemics is posing unprecedented challenges and threats to patients and healthcare systems worldwide. The ESPEN community includes thousands of healthcare professionals that are primarily involved in fighting COVID-19, from ICUs to internal medicine Departments to general hospitals around the world. Saving lives from acute complications is the first goal for all of us. Still we need to remind ourselves and our non-nutritionist Colleagues that nutritional status and nutritional care play a very relevant role in defining both short- and long-term outcomes of our patients.

Unfortunately, we are being once more sadly reminded in the growing COVID-19 patient population that older, frail and comorbid individuals are those more at risk for negative outcomes, with major threats and risks arising from related malnutrition. We also know that patients surviving acute complications through long ICU stays will face further worsening or new onset of malnutrition and wasting.

Under difficult times of high pressure, and indeed all the more for that, we therefore must aim at following recommendations for best-practice in nutritional care to improve our patients outcomes. While we are finalizing further ad-hoc documents which will be available soon, you may refer to our recent and up-to-date material for direct guidance in nutritional care, including but not limited to ICUpolymorbid, geriatrics and home care nutrition patients.

Fully available educational material from our Lifelong Learning Programme LLL can also be found online and downloadable at

Along with ESPEN’s commitment to provide support and guidance, we send you our heartfelt wishes in fighting this unprecedented battle.

Rocco Barazzoni                                Matthias Pirlich                                 Zeljko Krznaric

ESPEN Chairman                               ESPEN Secretary                               ESPEN Treasurer