Food Program Reaches Beyond Hospital To Community

Objective is to provide nutritious food and education to help diabetic patients make healthy decisions

By By Dan Hounsell
April 15, 2021

Healthcare food service managers increasingly are expanding their focus beyond meals for patients to include meals for community members that are designed to prevent health issues before they occur.

A partnership between a corporate hospital service and a local food ministry in Jersey Shore, N.J., has launched a program designed to educate and help feed diabetic patients looking to get their health under control, according to The Express. The Geisinger Health System has launched its Fresh Food Farmacy program with help from a local coalition of ministries focused on feeding those who need it: The New Love Center. The program’s objective is to provide nutritious food and education to empower patients with the ability to make healthy decisions for their bodies.

Food-insecure individuals with A1C levels greater than 8.0 are referred to the food pantry and are taught which foods to choose and which to avoid, health coaching services, recipes and a referral to The New Love Center. The center then grants them enough food to make 10 meals a week that will support a healthy lifestyle.

Food insecurity makes it difficult for diabetic individuals to provide themselves the most nutritious options to keep themselves healthy, according to Allison Hess, vice president of health services at Geisinger.

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