HUP Food Pantry Helps Patients with Food Insecurity

For the last few months, postpartum nurses at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania (HUP) who care for new parents in the hospital’s Silverstein 8 unit have asked a few extra questions about food.

So far, at least a few patients per week have screened “positive” for food insecurity — defined as not having access to enough food to stay healthy — and accepted a bag from the hospital’s food pantry. In one case, a mother of six receiving public assistance said that she was managing fine, but the food would be helpful. Another was a professional-looking couple that the nurse wouldn’t have guessed could use some extra groceries.

The new postpartum pilot program is just one way that the hospital’s food pantry is expanding from a pop-up pandemic relief effort into a sustainable, broad-reaching program to help the community. The ultimate vision is to help all patients who are experiencing food insecurity.





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