Renown Health Food Pantry Nourishes Patients in Need

By: Caroline Ackerman

February 16, 2021

Renown community health worker organizes a bag of food for the Food is Medicine Prescription program.

Unfortunately, many in our community go to bed hungry. Thanks to the support of the Food Bank of Northern Nevada and other local partners, Renown’s food pantry is helping meet the food needs of homeless and low-income individuals in our community. Patients who qualify for the “Food is Medicine Prescription” can receive a bag of food for themselves and each member of their immediate family every week through a free assistance program. This project started last year when Renown began giving food support to hospital and emergency room patients who expressed the need. Food is also given out at the Healthcare Center, which provides affordable access to care for anyone in our community. Those who receive care at the Healthcare Center are also eligible for food assistance.

Working Alongside the Community

After receiving food deliveries from the Food Bank of Northern Nevada, Renown’s community health team collects an assortment of fresh produce, donated from local grocery stores and other community organizations. Then they put together one bag for each family filled with healthy foods, such as:
  • Whole grain cereals
  • Shelf stable milk
  • Kid-friendly snacks (granola bars, popcorn, graham crackers
  • Proteins (low-salt soups, stews, peanut butter)
  • Seasonal produce

Food is Medicine Prescriptions Continue Amidst the Pandemic

Throughout the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic, Renown’s community health workers have been working remotely. They continue to reach out to patients who need groceries from the Food is Medicine Prescription program. With this in mind, the food pantry staff is currently coordinating outpatient deliveries to those with a Food is Medicine Prescription. At present, Renown is working to get more refrigeration, shelving and staffing to expand the service to more Renown Medical Group patients in need of food.