Health Is About More Than Medical Care
When patient families visit our Nemours Children's Health, Jessup Street office in Wilmington, Del., they may leave with more than a prescription and care instructions. Sometimes, they leave with toothpaste or formula or cans of beans or even a coat.
This is thanks to what we call “Care Closets.” We have two Care Closets in Delaware and as part of our commitment to the White House Conference on Hunger, Nutrition and Health, we are expanding that number to 12 by the end of this year.
Care Closets are just one way we help our patient families deal with food insecurity and other challenges. These primary care offices have canned goods, dry food items and other essentials stocked on shelves. If a family identifies a need on their Social Determinants of Health screening survey, a care coordinator from the practice will reach out to see if any of the goods we’ve stocked can help.
Where do we get the supplies? Some are donated by local organizations or Nemours associates, some we buy, and some come from state government sources.
Food for Children
To reach our vision of creating the healthiest generations of children, we must work to improve the health of children who may never enter our doors. That’s why we’ve committed, as part of The White House-led effort, to expanding our involvement in our backpack programs. These programs are aimed at ensuring children have nutritious food during out-of-school time.
We’ve signed agreements with Philabundance and Chester County Food Bank to step up our level of involvement.
That’s great news because we’re already reaching hundreds of families. Last summer, for instance, the Philabundance Community Kitchen assembled and distributed 12,900 breakfast kits. Funding from Nemours provided roughly 70% of these, which went to about 2,400 children.