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Health Champion Award Recognizes LRGHealthcare Food & Nutrition Services

10/5/2015

LACONIA, NH - LRGHealthcare's Food and Nutrition Services department (Lakes Region General Hospital and Franklin Regional Hospital) was awarded the Health Champion Award in the workplace category by the Partnership for Public Health at the Partnership’s Annual Meeting held September 24th at Steele Hill Resort.

Each year, the Partnership for Public Health recognizes an individual, community group, and workplace as a Health Champion for their achievements in promoting health and wellness in the towns within Belknap County as well as Danbury, Franklin, Hill, and Northfield. Categories of health include healthy eating and nutrition focusing on access to healthy foods and/or implementation of healthy food policies/practices; physical activity/exercise offered both on or off site; tobacco cessation through opportunities to quit smoking and/or implementation of tobacco free workplace policies; stress management education; and promotion of general employee health with health risk assessments, screenings, and injury prevention.

LRGHealthcare's Food and Nutrition Services was thrilled to be selected as the workplace Health Champion. Jason Carter, Director of Food and Nutrition Services comments, "It's an honor and privilege to accept this award on behalf of the Food & Nutrition Services teams at both LRGH and FRH. The staff, along with the support from LRGHealthcare leadership, are dedicated to the mission of strengthening the well-being of our community through the meals we serve and have worked relentlessly towards that end. It is an exciting time for us and we look forward to collaborating with the Partnership for Public Health for many years to come."

Food and Nutrition Services at LRGHealthcare has been hard at work over the last few years to provide healthy and delicious choices for their patients, staff, and visitors. Their goal has been to offer more healthy options and make it easy for people to make the right choices.

How are they doing it? Here are some highlights:
  • The daily "Plate It Up Right" special offering a meal that is less than or equal to 550 calories, 5 grams of saturated fat, 5 grams of sugar, and 550 milligrams of sodium.
  • The "traffic light" program which color codes items and meals to help customers quickly identify foods that are healthier than others. The “traffic light” on each item or meal guide people to eat lots (green light), eat less (yellow light), or eat rarely (red light).
  • The rooftop garden is growing some fresh herbs, spices, and produce to be used in the hospitals’ recipes.
  • New relationships with local farms/establishments such as Miles Smith Farm, Woodshed Coffee, Vermont Bread Company, Beans and Greens Farm, and other local growers of produce are helping LRGHealthcare provide local, healthy options and promote the use of local, sustainable food.
  • They signed the Healthier Hospital Initiative which states they'll work towards more balanced menus, healthier beverages, and more local/sustainable foods over the next 1-3 years.
  • Later this month, they will join 230 healthcare facilities across the nation to participate in National Food Day where they are joining Health Care without Harm in efforts to serve healthy, sustainable, affordable food. Those participating will celebrate by serving meat or poultry that is produced without the use of routine, non-therapeutic antibiotics. You will find this special food item on October 22 at LRGH and October 23 at FRH.

LRGHealthcare Food and Nutrition Services does not appear to be stopping their efforts anytime soon. They recently changed their pizza recipes to make them healthier without losing any of the taste and have a laundry list of other plans on the horizon to play their part in promoting healthy choices to their patients, staff, and visitors.

(L to R) Health Champion Award recipients, LRGHealthcare Dir. Food & Nutrition Services, Jason Carter and Room Service Supervisor, Cris Rueffert pose with the Partnership for Public Health Executive Dir., Lisa Morris and Board President, Maggie Pritchard after receiving their award.

LRGHealthcare is a not-for-profit healthcare charitable trust representing Lakes Region General Hospital, Franklin Regional Hospital, and affiliated medical providers. LRGHealthcare’s mission is to provide quality, compassionate care and to strengthen the well-being of our community.

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