ASPEN Publishes Comprehensive Report on Size, Scope, Reach of Enteral Nutrition Use

Data Highlights Market Drivers, Challenges and Trends for High-Demand Clinical Nutrition Therapy

Silver Spring, MD – Today, as part of Malnutrition Awareness Week™, the American Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition (ASPEN) announced a comprehensive report, Enteral Nutrition by the Numbers: EN Data Across the Healthcare Continuum. The report captures the most recent data available on the use and practice of this life-saving clinical nutrition therapy.

Enteral Nutrition (EN) is provided through feeding tubes in a variety of healthcare settings. In fact, more than 250,000 hospital patients each year in the United States — and many more in long-term care and home settings — rely on EN and demand is growing. Yet, no standardized data collection tool or central registry for patients receiving EN has consistently captured data in every care setting.

“This is a very large, complex market that affects patients across many demographics – from infants to the elderly,” explained ASPEN CEO Debra BenAvram. “However, there are no comprehensive methods for collecting data on patients receiving EN across the many care settings in which it is provided. And, of course, healthcare reform and changes in reimbursement policy have an impact on its use and availability.” 

It’s no surprise, then, that gathering key information on EN has, historically, been a challenge. As an organization dedicated to improving patient care by advancing the science and practice of clinical nutrition, ASPEN is well positioned to both gather and analyze the data around this therapy. 

“Our hope is that this report becomes a one-stop-shop for those looking to better understand the reach and impact of EN,” explained Peggi Guenter, PhD, RN, FAAN, FASPEN, ASPEN Senior Director of Clinical Practice, Quality, and Advocacy and the report’s co-author. “We believe it will serve as a resource not only for clinicians and healthcare administrators but also supply chain personnel, safety and regulatory organizations, payers, manufacturers and policy makers, among others involved in bringing EN to those who need it.”

In addition to outlining EN market drivers, challenges and trends, the report segments data by:

  1. Healthcare setting , from acute care hospitals, nursing homes and home care settings to long-term acute care hospitals, and inpatient rehabilitation facilities.
  2. Product type and delivery methods , accounting for details including tube types, formula mix, and administration methods.
  3. The intersection of EN and malnutrition , including how and when providers might prescribe this nutrition therapy to both acute and post-acute care patients. 

The report also identifies gaps in the data and helps identify ways to fill those gaps with future research.

“By using this information, stakeholders will be better positioned to have patients across the healthcare continuum receive the most appropriate clinical nutrition and, ultimately, achieve better outcomes,” said Guenter. 

The report is available for purchase here.  



The American Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition (ASPEN) is dedicated to improving patient care by advancing the science and practice of nutrition support therapy and metabolism. Founded in 1976, ASPEN is an interdisciplinary organization whose members are involved in the provision of clinical nutrition therapies, including parenteral and enteral nutrition. With more than 6,500 members from around the world, ASPEN is a community of dietitians, nurses, nurse practitioners, pharmacists, physicians, scientists, students, and other health professionals from every facet of nutrition support clinical practice, research, and education. For more information about ASPEN, please visit

About Malnutrition Awareness Week™

ASPEN is hosting the sixth annual Malnutrition Awareness Week™, September 18 – 22, 2017. The purpose of Malnutrition Awareness Week™ is to raise awareness in healthcare professionals to consider assessing and intervening earlier and for the public to realize that they need to ask about their nutrition status and advocate for optimal nutrition care as much as possible. The week provides a variety of educational programming and resources to help clinicians and the general public understand this often poorly diagnosed condition. More information is available at

Juliet Glassroth
[email protected]