Kaiser Permanente plans to join 17 other U.S. hospital systems in an initiative to offer healthier foods on hospital campuses, the Los Angeles Times' "Booster Shots" reports (Healy, "Booster Shots," Los Angeles Times, 10/9).
The participating hospital systems represent a total of more than 150 hospitals (Lee, Modern Healthcare, 10/6).
Kaiser Permanente operates 37 hospitals across California, Hawaii and the Pacific Northwest.
Details of Initiative
The Partnership for a Healthier America -- a group dedicated to reducing childhood obesity in the U.S. -- organized the initiative.
The group works in conjunction with First Lady Michelle Obama's "Let's Move!" campaign ("Booster Shots," Los Angeles Times, 10/9).
According to the initiative, participating hospital systems over the next four years will:
- Label all food and beverage items, as well as patient menus, with calorie counts (Kaiser Permanente release, 10/6);
- Offer meals within one year that meet certain nutritional standards and cost the same as, or less than, other meal choice (Modern Healthcare, 10/6);
- Limit unhealthy beverages to a maximum of 20% of drinks available in the hospital;
- Remove deep-fat fryers and deep-fried foods from cafeterias and menus;
- Market only healthy hospital foods in cafeterias;
- Meet certain nutritional standards for at least 60% of entrees and side dishes; and
- Increase fruits and vegetables to 10% of total food spending, or increase spending on produce by 20% annually (Kaiser Permanente release, 10/6).
Loel Solomon -- national director of community health initiatives and evaluation at Kaiser Permanente -- said, "We owe it to our patients, our members and our visitors and especially to our physicians, nurses and employees, to help make healthy choices easy," adding, "We need to help create a tipping point where healthy food is available and convenient" ("Booster Shots," Los Angeles Times, 10/9).