Six challenges hospitals aim to beat for green bill of health

Those challenges, including creating a healthier environment, are looked at in the Healthier Hospitals Initiative’s second annual Milestone Report.

OAKLAND, Calif.—Going green, improving environmental performance, creating healthier environments — it all sounds good. And with a Hippocratic Oath to do no harm, hospitals are ripe with opportunity. But where to start, how to prioritize, how to measure and how to learn? That's what the Healthier Hospitals Initiative is for.

Just what the doctor ordered

Hospitals are demonstrating the Initiative's value in the second annual Milestone Report (PDF). The report shares findings of the 638 participating hospitals that submitted data in 2013, an increase from 350 hospitals the previous year. Some hospitals enrolled as a stand-alone facility, some as entire systems. Every hospital took on one or all of its challenges.

Enrolled hospitals commit to a minimum of one of the six challenges that make up the initiative. The six challenge areas are Engaged Leadership, Leaner Energy, Healthier Food, Less Waste, Safer Chemicals and Smarter Purchasing. Each challenge is comprised of one to three goals and a specific target.

Although not every hospital responded to every challenge, some interesting trends emerged from the data reported in 2013.

More From FoodService Director

Ideas and Innovation
salad

We’re currently piloting a Salad Bar Happy Hour 
in Cafe 16. Due to Health Department regulations, any self-serve salad bar items must be disposed of after service. The salad bar goes “on sale” for 25 cents an ounce post-lunchtime to help reduce waste as well as offer value to customers.

Menu Development
sauces

Adding an entirely new cuisine to the menu can feel daunting. But what if you could dabble in international flavors simply by introducing a few new condiments? For inspiration, FSD talked to operators who are offering a range of condiments plucked from global regional cuisines.

“Most ethnic cuisines have some sort of sauce or condiment relishes that go with their dishes,” says Roy Sullivan, executive chef with Nutrition & Food Services at UCSF Medical Center in San Francisco. Condiments offered to diners at UCSF Medical include chimichurri (Argentina), curry (India), tzatziki (...

Ideas and Innovation
turnip juice brine

Give leftover brine new life by adding it to vegetables. In an interview with Food52, Stuart Brioza, chef and owner of State Bird Provisions in San Francisco, says that he adds a splash of leftover brine while sauteeing mushrooms to increase their flavor profile. “We like to ferment turnips at the restaurant, and it’s a great way to use that brine—though dill pickle brine would work just as well,” he says.

Menu Development
side dishes

Operators looking to increase sales of side dishes may want to focus on freshness and value. Here’s what attributes consumers say are important when picking sides.

Fresh - 73% Offered at a fair price - 72% Satisfies a craving - 64% Premium ingredients - 56% Natural ingredients - 49% Signature side - 47% Something familiar - 46% Housemade/made from scratch - 44% Something new/unique - 42% Large portion size - 42% Healthfulness - 40% Family-size - 40%

Source: Technomic’s 2017 Starters, Small Plates and Sides Consumer Trend Report , powered by Ignite

FSD Resources