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Kansas Hospitals Commit to Healthier Environments


51 hospitals have made healthier on-site food and beverage environments a priority



July 02, 2014
The Kansas Hospital Association has received pledges from 51 Kansas hospitals committed to examining their current food and beverage practices. These hospitals will consider new policies that provide healthier food options in the hospital cafeteria and throughout the facility. This enhanced access to healthy food aims to positively impact hospital employees, patients and visitors, while also helping to establish norms for healthier living for the communities served.

The 51 participating hospitals represent 20,840 employees and 107,953 patients discharged each year who utilize the onsite amenities at the hospitals.

As the primary source of health care in many communities, hospitals have the opportunity to influence the health decisions of the public by the food and beverage choices they offer. Participating hospitals will consider adopting recommendations made by the Kansas Hospital Education and Research Foundation's Healthy Kansas Hospitals initiative. Recommendations to food and beverage policies include increasing the availability of fresh fruits and vegetables, eliminating all fried foods, adding healthier items to vending machines and adding nutrition labeling for meals in the cafeteria.

KHA President and CEO Tom Bell complimented the hospitals across the state for voluntarily being part of the Healthy Kansas Hospitals initiative.

"It is important that hospitals are active in setting the example for their communities by providing the healthiest choices possible," said Bell. "Not only is offering more healthy foods a better service to patients, it also represents better health for the community."

Kevin Miller, President and CEO of Hutchinson Regional Medical Center, said the 1,400 health care professionals who are employed by the facility who seek dining options on the hospital campus will benefit from these changes.

"It is our hope that these changes will have a long-term positive impact on the health of those who seek medical care in Hutchinson. As the region's flagship health care provider, we have an inherent obligation to practice what we preach by providing the healthiest dining options for those who visit Hutchinson Regional Medical Center," Miller said. "During the past year, our dietary staff has completed a top to bottom audit of all food and drink options and made significant changes to the services we provide to insure that our patients, their families and our employees are consuming healthy and nutritious food."

Those hospitals participating in the initiative are: Allen County Regional Hospital, Iola; Anderson County Hospital, Garnett; Atchison Hospital, Atchison; Cheyenne County Hospital, Saint Francis; Citizens Medical Center, Colby; Cloud County Health Center, Concordia; Coffey County Hospital, Burlington; Comanche County Hospital, Coldwater; Community HealthCare System, Inc., Onaga; Edwards County Hospital and Healthcare Center, Kinsley; Girard Medical Center, Girard; Gove County Medical Center, Quinter; Graham County Hospital, Hill City; Great Bend Regional Hospital, Great Bend; Herington Municipal Hospital, Herington; Holton Community Hospital, Holton; Hospital District # 1 of Rice County, Lyons; Hutchinson Regional Medical Center, Hutchinson; Kearny County Hospital, Lakin; Kiowa County Memorial Hospital, Greensburg; Labette Health, Parsons; Lawrence Memorial Hospital, Lawrence; Lindsborg Community Hospital, Lindsborg; Meade District Hospital/Artesian Valley Health System, Meade; Memorial Health System, Abilene; Mercy Hospital Fort Scott, Fort Scott; Mercy Regional Health Center, Inc., Manhattan; Mitchell County Hospital Health Systems, Beloit; Morris County Hospital, Council Gove; Neosho Memorial Regional Medical Center, Chanute; Newton Medical Center, Newton; Osborne County Memorial Hospital, Osborne; Phillips County Hospital, Phillipsburg; Republic County Hospital, Belleville; Rooks County Health Center, Plainville; Russell Regional Hospital, Russell; Saint Luke's Cushing Hospital, Leavenworth; Scott County Hospital, Scott City; Shawnee Mission Medical Center, Shawnee Mission; Sheridan County Health Complex, Hoxie; St. Catherine Hospital, Garden City; St. Francis Health, Topeka; St. Luke Hospital and Living Center, Marion; Stanton County Hospital, Johnson; Stevens County Hospital, Hugoton; Stormont-Vail HealthCare, Inc., Topeka; Via Christi Hospital Pittsburg, Inc., Pittsburg; Wamego Health Center, Wamego; Wichita County Health Center, Leoti; William Newton Hospital, Winfield; and Wilson Medical Center, Neodesha.

The Kansas Hospital Association is a not-for-profit association of health care provider organizations and individuals that are committed to the health improvement of their communities. KHA membership includes 217 member facilities, of which 128 are full-service community hospitals. Founded in 1910, KHA maintains its vision of "an organization of hospitals working together to improve access, quality and the affordability of health care for all Kansans." For more information, visit HealthyKansasHospitals.org.

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