Want to learn more about the type of work Fresh Advantage does? Read this article to get a peek into a plan that was put together for addressing food insecurity at an urban Community Mental Health Center.
Marydale DeBor and Fresh Advantage was featured on CivilEats.com on April 6, 2016 in the article ‘This Visionary is Helping Hospitals Take Food Seriously‘ by Larissa Zimberoff. Check it out!
Marydale DeBor is a featured expert in “Treating Hunger As a Health Issue,” a US News & World Report article that examines the role of hospitals in helping patients manage their health outcomes by alleviating food insecurity. Marydale works with hospitals to develop community benefit programs that promote healthy eating, reduce food insecurity, and improve population health. Provisions in the Affordable Care Act now offer financial incentives to encourage hospitals to focus on preventive care and decrease readmission rates. Although this is new and challenging territory for most hospitals, using proven hospital-based programs such as Plow to Plate, which Marydale helped design and build, can help hospitals achieve their health care objectives while maintaining their non-profit status.
Poverty can literally make people sick. As money and food run out at the end of the month, hospitalization for hypoglycemia increases for low-income people, as Dr. Hilary Seligman and her colleagues found in this study reported on in The Atlantic.
Please contact us for information about how Fresh Advantage helps hospitals use their community benefit programs to address food insecurity and its serious health consequences. These programs, which must be strengthened in response to provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, offer a proven means of decreasing food insecurity
FA Director Marydale DeBor, a nationally recognized community benefit expert, is collaborating with leading anti-hunger organizations and physicians across the nation, including Dr. Seligman, in the fight against malnutrition-related disease.
Food Pathfinder and FA founder/director Marydale DeBor was a VP at New Milford Hospital in Connecticut when she was interviewed by Katherine Gustafson for Change Comes to Dinner. Marydale was instrumental in creating and developing Plow to Plate, a nationally recognized community- and hospital-based network of programs dedicated to combating obesity, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes. “Two years ago, DeBor moved to New Haven to start the consulting firm Fresh Advantage. She now does work similar to what she did in New Milford . . .” read the book review.
In this National Kale Day interview, Marydale discusses two key strategies for transforming institutional food: first, the crucial importance of having the institution’s top leadership understand and promote the changes; and second, moving away from “food court” eating (too many choices, too many calories) to a simplified plant-based menu that uses the tastiest, most nutritious ingredients. As Marydale explains, food costs are controlled when menus feature fewer options and less meat.
As they strive to prove they are benefiting communities under the Affordable Care Act, nonprofit hospitals may become the latest battleground between fast-food purveyors and advocates of healthy—and preferably locally produced—cuisine.
“I am looking for opportunities for you to be the doctors to the world,” said Marydale DeBor, a former Connecticut hospital executive, at the convention for the National Farmers Union last month in Springfield, Mass.
Hospitals have long been a culinary joke, serving unappetizing food of questionable nutritional value to patients while selling fast food that is even more questionable in their cafeterias. Medical-school critics have chastised physicians for prescribing to patients costly drugs to deal with the effects of diseases that arise from bad diets and lack of exercise rather than feeding them healthy food and teaching them to eat better when they leave the hospital.
A drive straight north from New Haven, CT (my hometown) to the shore of Lake Champlain in Burlington, VT (the location of a conference where I was a speaker) on a beautiful August day is sheer joy, given the natural beauty that embraces one travelling north, even if one is not “on a mission.” But alas, I am always on a mission: to engage the health care “sector” in the national movement to reinvent our food system (the subject of my speech at the conference), and to promote New England Farmers Union as an important actor in creating solutions to the food system crisis we face. So, the drive was a bonus and the experience of being a participant and a speaker at the conference was… a gift. I learned that:
VIDEO & PODCAST LIBRARY
Recovery is Cooking
From Connecticut Mental Health Center
Plow to Plate
Before Fresh Advantage, Marydale co-founded Plow to Plate. Hear about their successes on All Things Connecticut
Prescribing Food, Part 1: Making Hospitals Healthier
From Heritage Radio Network
Women Addressing Food In Healthcare
From the Yale Sustainable Food Project Podcast