Healthcare Sector Engagement
As food insecurity is increasingly recognized as a health issue and contributor to disease burden, health and health-related organizations should establish protocols to identify and address food security at the clinical level, and in turn help mitigate healthcare costs.
Healthcare providers in particular have a central role to play in
addressing food insecurity on the ground. Systemic approaches
are needed going forward, such as universal food security screenings by health professionals and in healthcare settings. Other strategies include embedding social determinants of health into electronic health records, prescribed treatment following screenings and linking eligible patients to related benefits and healthy food sources, and training for healthcare providers on discussing these issues with patients.
Healthcare groups should continue to broaden its communications and partnerships with other sectors to address food security, building on those partnerships and coalitions already in place. The Root Cause Coalition, Convergence Partnership, and Partnership for a Healthy America offer opportunities for education and action, and healthcare leaders should look to the resources in their own organizations to develop innovative approaches and solutions.