Morrison Management Services has announced that it plans to commit to implementation of its comprehensive wellness platform across all of its healthcare business. The move is designed to make healthcare institutions models of healthful eating and to encourage behavioral change in the hospital environment and beyond. Serving approximately 550 hospitals and integrated healthcare systems across the country, Morrison's commitment along with that of its clients up to 300 million hospital meals annually healthier than ever.
As part of a broad platform that includes everything from supply chain changes to environmental commitments, Morrison is implementing firm standards for healthy food marketing, wellness meal offerings, nutrition labeling, food preparation, healthy beverage offerings and amounts of fruits and vegetables offered. "This is a massive undertaking," says Peggy O'Neill, vice president nutrition and wellness, "and while much of it is in the works already, full implementation will be completed by mid-2014."
"Rising healthcare costs and lost productivity within the healthcare setting and community are driving the demand for prevention-based programs," adds Morrison President Tim Pierce. "By implementing these changes nationally, we are making healthful choices easy and accessible to millions of patients, staff and visitors."
Morrison recently released and is now implementing its new menu, which includes a 44% reduction of sodium and a 33% reduction in calories compared to traditional fare. Using the latest research on healthful eating and incorporating techniques that influence behavioral change in food consumption, the initiative is designed to...
• offer healthier foods at cash registers in place of high impulse low-nutrient food
• eliminate 5.7 million pounds of sugar from bottled beverages
• switch to exclusive use of whole grain or legume based pasta in the 3.7 million pounds of pasta served each year
• offer whole grains as an alternative to the 1.9 million pounds of rice served annually
• use misted olive oils exclusively in appropriate applications and
• feature images of healthy nutrient-rich food in regular marketing promotions
In addition, Morrison plans to enhance the wellness environment through in-hospital events such as cooking demonstrations, seasonal tables, and on-site farmer's markets as well as community events such as community cooking demonstrations, healthy eating DVDs, a community website, wellness teaching kitchens, and wellness summits.
"Our goal is to continue to bring unique solutions to help hospitals meet the nation's healthcare challenges," says Pierce. "As the first to implement such a comprehensive wellness platform, we will once again lead the industry in a cultural change that will make healthful choices the standard in our country's healthcare institutions."