Columbia, South Carolina


TO: All Organizational Components

SUBJECT: Nutritional Services


This directive prescribes the policies that will guide the Nutritional Services activities of the Department of Mental Health. The Nutritional Services component of the Division of Administrative Services shall be responsible for the preparation, delivery and serving of nutritious meals to the patients and appropriate staff and guests of the Department of Mental Health.


1. Nutritional Services shall be supervised by a qualified individual who will bear the title of Director, Nutritional Services. The Director's primary duties shall be supervision of the preparation, delivery and service of meals to the patients of the Department. The Director also shall ensure through available resources that the food preparation, food delivery, and food serving areas, fixtures and equipment, are kept in a clean, sanitary and operational condition.

2. Menu approval shall be performed by a Nutritional Advisory Committee comprised of at least six members. The Committee shall meet monthly on a day and time that will be determined by the consensus of the membership. The Director, Nutritional Services, shall be an ex-officio member. The remaining members shall be appointed by the State Director of Mental Health or his designee and will serve at the pleasure of the Director.

Duties and responsibilities of the Committee are as follows:

A. Ensure that meals served are nutritionally appropriate to meet the needs of the patients (meets the RDA of nutrients) as well as being palatable and appetizing.

B. Seek methods to minimize costs without sacrificing quality.

C. Assist in the formulation of specifications and evaluation of samples of foods to be purchased.

D. Menus will be planned and prepared in advance for each three month period.

3. Nutritional Services shall employ a sufficient number of Registered Dietitians and Nutritionists to adequately fulfill the nutritional/clinical requirements of all facilities within the Department. Since needs and requirements may vary from one facility to another due to such factors as age, mental and physical disorders of the patients served, each Dietitian/ Nutritionist should obtain input from the facility/facilities that he/she serves in order to reflect these special needs. All Dietitians and Nutritionists will be directly supervised by a Registered Dietitian.

4. The Director, Nutritional Services, shall continually monitor the food delivery system to ensure that it is operating in the most efficient and cost effective manner possible. Any recommendations for major changes to the delivery system shall be made to the State Director of Mental Health through the Deputy State Director, Division of Administrative Services.


The Director, Nutritional Services, shall develop, implement and maintain written procedures that define the methods and practices that shall meet required standards, as applicable, of regulatory, licensing and/or accrediting bodies and are subject to survey coincidental to the facility survey.


In addition to the inspections that are performed by external licensing/certifying /regulatory agencies, internal inspections by a qualified individual shall be performed to ensure compliance with applicable standards that govern Nutritional Services and adherence to departmental policies.

This directive supersedes SCDMH Directive No. 677-85 entitled "Nutritional Services”.

John Connery's signature

John J. Connery, M.A.
Interim State Director  

June 13, 2006