A positive side effect of the pandemic: Demand for local food is through the roof.
Created with support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Health Care Without Harm’s “Delivering community benefit: Healthy food playbook” supports hospital community benefit professionals and community partners in developing initiatives to promote healthy food access and healthy, local and sustainable food systems. Marydale DeBor was excited to serve as Senior Adviser to this important three year project.
The playbook and events throughout the year offer inspiration and tools to address food- and diet-related community health needs throughout the community health engagement process.
According to the Christian Science Monitor, “Hospitals in the US are setting up food banks, and medical schools are putting cooking classes on the curriculum – part of a shift in focus away from simply treating disease toward caring for the whole person.” Read this insightful article to learn more.
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.
On October 14, Fresh Advantage’s Managing Director Marydale DeBor, partner Chef Anne Gallagher, and Fresh Advantage affiliate nutritionist Francine Blinten enjoyed “Tea” (a longstanding Yale tradition) with the next crop of eager healthy-food champions on campus at Pierson College. This Fresh Advantage trio was delighted to be the first special guests in the Yale Sustainable Food Program’s 2015–16 speaker series “Women of Food.” The afternoon’s theme was “Women Addressing Food in Healthcare.”
We were pleased to see this report from the Center for Health Law & Policy Innovation of the Harvard Law School. Food Is Medicine: Opportunities in Public and Private Health Care for Supporting Nutritional Counseling and Medically Tailored, Home-Delivered Meals discusses the significance of nutrition for patients with acute and chronic illnesses. The report also offers suggestions for how providers of medically tailored nutrition intervention services can work with public and private insurance systems. The authors note that “people with acute and chronic illnesses often have difficulty obtaining and preparing adequate food. Malnourished patients are twice as likely to be readmitted to a hospital within 15 days of discharge and have a much higher risk of death than patients who are well-nourished.”
As part of Community Health Improvement Week in New Haven, the Connecticut Mental Health Center (CMHC) is hosting Hunger As a Health Issue: Community Food Needs Assessment and Solutions. This special “lunch and learn” event is co-hosted by four community-based organizations committed to promoting sustainable local food systems and addressing food insecurity. Fresh Advantage founder Marydale DeBor coordinated this event as part of her ongoing advisory role for CMHC’s “Food Transformation” initiative. CMHC, Connecticut’s leading mental health agency for the Greater New Haven area, is managed by the Yale School of Medicine, where Marydale is a lecturer in the Department of Psychiatry.
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. — Hospitals around the country should become new markets for farmers to provide healthy, often locally-produced food to comply with their legal requirements under the Affordable Care Act, a prominent health care consultant told the National Farmers Union at its annual convention here this week.
“Hospitals have to demonstrate to the Internal Revenue Service that they are investing dollars into the community that justifies their nonprofit status. This is a time to become engaged as a community advocate for food and what impact it has on the community,” said Marydale DeBor, a former Connecticut hospital executive who now runs a New Haven consulting business called Fresh Advantage.
“I am looking for opportunities for you to be the doctors to the world,” DeBor said.
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