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Paid Feeding Guidelines

What is the role of the Paid Feeding Assistant?

Why was this role developed?

Who can be a Paid Feeding Assistant?

How can I become a Paid Feeding Assistant?

Who teaches the Paid Feeding Assistant course?

How will I know which residents will need feeding assistance?

Who do I contact if I have a problem during the feeding?

What if a resident's family or friend routinely assists with feeding? Do they have to complete the training course?

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What is the role of the Paid Feeding Assistant?

Paid Feeding Assistants are individuals who have been trained to provide feeding assistance to residents of long term care facilities, under the supervision of the RN or LPN.

Why was this role developed?

The role was developed to provide more residents with help in eating and drinking and reduce the incidence of unplanned weight loss and dehydration. Some residents only need encouragement or minimal assistance, which does not require nursing training.

Who can be a Paid Feeding Assistant?

Paid Feeding Assistants can be part-time workers, retired individuals or homemakers who are available for a few hours per day. They may also be older students who come into the facility for 1-2 hours at the noon or evening meal. In some facilities, all non-medical employees are required to complete the training and help feed residents at mealtimes.

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How can I become a Paid Feeding Assistant?

Facilities requesting approval for a Paid Feeding Assistant training program must submit a curriculum to the Board of Nursing. Paid Feeding Assistants must successfully complete an eight (8) hour, Board of Nursing approved training course that includes:

  • Assistance with feeding and hydration;
  • Communication and interpersonal skills;
  • Feeding techniques;
  • Infection Control;
  • Recognizing and reporting resident changes; and,
  • Resident rights;
  • Response to resident behavior;
  • Safety and emergency procedures.

Who teaches the Paid Feeding Assistant course?

Professionals requesting approval as an Instructor must submit a Faculty Approval form to the Board of Nursing. Those professionals considered as Instructors include:

  • Dieticians
  • Licensed Practical Nurses.
  • Occupational Therapists
  • Physical Therapists
  • Registered Nurses
  • Speech Therapists

How will I know which residents will need feeding assistance?

Selection of residents shall be based on the resident's plan of care and the RN or LPNs professional judgement and experience. A facility must ensure that Paid Feeding Assistants are assigned only residents who have no complicated feeding problems.

Who do I contact if I have a problem during the feeding?

Paid Feeding Assistants work under the supervision of a RN or LPN. The licensed nurse, using his/her professional judgement should select those residents who can be safely fed in their own rooms or in the dining room, based on resident selection/criteria. In the event of an emergency, the Paid Feeding Assistant must call a licensed nurse for help utilizing the resident call system established by that facility.

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What if a resident's family or friend routinely assists with feeding? Do they have to complete the training course?

Volunteers and family members are not required to complete the Paid Feeding Assistant training. It is up to the facility to determine whether or not to require volunteers and family members to complete the training. Facilities are responsible for the care and safety of residents, even if the resident is fed by a relative or a friend.


New Hampshire Board of Nursing
121 South Fruit Street   |  Concord, NH 03301
Nursing (603) 271-2323  |  Nursing Assistant (603) 271-6282
Fax (603) 271-6605