Nearly every community in America has been affected by hunger or food insecurity, according to Feeding America, and poor nutrition has a direct effect on well-being. Hunger has been linked to obesity, chronic diseases and behavioral issues.
ACHP has released profiles about programs from members HealthPartners, Kaiser Permanente, Presbyterian Healthcare Services and UCare detailing how community-based health plans have helped reduce food insecurity.
HealthPartners is transforming food shelves by partnering with Valley Outreach Food Shelf, which distributes more than 800,000 pounds of fruits, vegetables and whole grains to about 3,500 individuals every year. Kaiser Permanente collaborates with the Hunger Free Colorado initiative, which aims to ensure all residents in the state have access to affordable, healthy foods by creating a unified voice among several organizations. Kaiser Permanente Colorado conducts hunger screenings and refers members to Hunger Free Colorado, which pairs individuals with food resources. Presbyterian Healthcare Services subsidizes the La Cosecha Community Supported Agriculture program, which brings food insecure families fresh, local produce each week throughout a 20-week growing season. And UCare launched its mobile market by transforming a metro bus into a store on wheels that serves 18 locations every week.
ACHP plans continue to find ways to increase the accessibility of healthy food in their communities. AvMed and Feeding South Florida have teamed up to create the AvMed Mobile Pantry. Delivering free fruits, vegetables, bread, and dairy products, the Mobile Pantry serves five South Florida neighborhoods where quality, fresh foods can be difficult to come by.
Nutrition and health go hand in hand. Thanks to programs like the ones developed by ACHP members, many Americans are receiving the food they need to live a healthier life.
ACHP recently held a webinar showcasing members who have implemented innovate approaches to combatting food insecurity. The profiles featured in the webinar as well as the presentation slides and recording are available on ACHP’s website.