Eskenazi Health Joins National Hospital Healthy Food Initiative
Eskenazi Health has joined the Partnership for a Healthier America (PHA), a growing effort of hospitals, health care systems and health care food service providers to enhance onsite the commitment to healthy food offerings. PHA works with the private sector and PHA Honorary Chair First Lady Michelle Obama to end the childhood obesity epidemic in a generation.
Currently, Eskenazi Health serves an average of more than 450,500 meals a year to patients, visitors, employees and guests. Eskenazi Health’s participation in the Hospital Healthy Food Initiative provides all who travel through this facility with a wide range of nutritious and well-balanced options.
Over the next three years, Eskenazi Health will continue to incorporate changes so that all meals and food items served in its facilities meet the standards of the initiative, which include:
- Wellness Meals – Offering a daily wellness meal that meets healthy nutrition standards and is priced less than or equal to other available meal options and increasing the number of wellness meals by one each year, up to a minimum of three
- Children’s Wellness Meal – Offering a daily children’s wellness meal that meets healthy nutrition standards and is priced less than or equal to other available meal options
- Overall Cafeteria Offerings – Ensuring that 60 percent of all a la carte entrees and side dishes meet nutrition standards
- Healthy Check-Out – Displaying only health-promoting food options at and near cash register stations
- Nutrition Labeling and Marketing – Labeling items with calories per serving by 2014 and displaying only health-promoting food options in advertising and menu materials
- Food Preparation – Removing all fryers and deep fat-fried products
- Fruits and Vegetables – Increasing the percentage of fruits and vegetables purchased by the hospital by 20 percent annually or ensuring that fruits and vegetables account for at least 10 percent of total food purchased by the hospital
- Beverages – Increasing the percentage of better-for-you beverages purchased by the hospital (e.g., water, 100 percent fruit and vegetable juice, unflavored milk, teas and coffee) to 80 percent of overall beverage purchases and ensuring tap water is available where possible
Every organization that works with PHA agrees that a third-party organization will monitor and report on progress toward its commitment. These commitments are verified and reported on in PHA’s annual report, which is released each spring.
PHA is devoted to working with the private sector to ensure the health of our nation’s youth by solving the childhood obesity crisis. In 2010, PHA was created in conjunction with – but independent from – First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! effort. PHA is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization that is led by some of the nation’s most respected health and childhood obesity experts. PHA brings together public, private and nonprofit leaders to broker meaningful commitments and develop strategies to end childhood obesity. Most important, PHA ensures that commitments made are commitments kept by working with unbiased third parties to monitor and publicly report on the progress its partners are making. For more information about PHA, please visit www.aHealthierAmerica.org and follow PHA on Twitter @PHAnews.