The Wall Street Journal’s “Take Two Aspirin—and a Serving of Kale: Wielding food as medicine, hospitals are focusing on nutrition, sending patients home with prescriptions as well as bags of good food” article covered the important work of Healthcare Anchor Network member ProMedica and other health systems and hospitals taking measures to prevent and treat illness through diet. They are looking to meet the nutritional needs of patients through a variety of innovative ways, including providing access to fresh fruits and vegetables. This project was one of the case studies in The Democracy Collaborative’s “Place-based Investing” toolkit.
ProMedica, a not-for-profit health system headquartered in Toledo, Ohio, pursued several avenues to help patients follow a good diet. ProMedica’s Social Determinants of Health Institute set up two food pantries, where patients can receive nutritional guidance and free groceries. ProMedica opened a grocery store a few miles from one hospital, in an area that had been bereft of healthful food. Called Market on the Green, the store is open to the public, not just ProMedica patients.