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Healthcare dining trending: Geisinger’s restyled food service; pop-ups; and fresh produce

Plus, how a hospital chef reaps the bounty from an onsite organic farm and how the country’s largest hospitals are dealing with coronavirus in the 2020 FM Power Players for healthcare dining

This month, healthcare dining centers continued to find new and safe ways to feed patients.

Geisinger hospitals, a Pennsylvania healthcare system, pivoted when the coronavirus struck its state. Initially plagued with self-serve station issues to supply glitches, the hospital system retooled its entire foodservice operations to meet the current needs of patients and updated health and safety systems in place by the CDC.

In spite of the wild changes, some things didn't change. While many healthcare facilities have shifted to disposables during the pandemic, Geisinger still serves meals on china plates with metal flatware. Patient meals are delivered to individual rooms; COVID patients’ meals are delivered by nurses. Read more about how this hospital system coped with the pandemic.

In Ohio, the team at Sodexo have worked a new way to feed patients – pop-ups. Using a cooler cart, a grill and a lot of imagination, the food service crew at ProMedica made a splash during summer on the hospital’s patio and are riding into fall with creative, fun pop-ups that allow for safe distancing and fresh air.

"We had originally planned so many fun events but with the pandemic, we had to trim it down and slim it down and just do what we can,” says Steve Fogle, director of nutrition at ProMedica.

And, at Homestead Hospital the Grow2Heal Garden produces more than 30 different fruits, vegetables and herbs for nutrition and wellness while also serving as a community educational resource for maintaining healthy lifestyles.

See what else was trending this month in healthcare dining.

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