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Strategies for Supporting Health Center Patients Experiencing Food Insecurity

Resource Topic: Emerging Issues, HIT/Data, Social Determinants of Health (SDOH), Special and Vulnerable Populations, Value-Based Health Care Transformation

Resource Subtopic: COVID-19, Electronic Health Records (EHRs), Community, Health, and Housing Partnerships, Programs and Services.

Keywords: Community Engagement, Education of - Staff (e.g., Competency-Based), Integrated Care, Nutrition, Screening.

Year Developed: 2021

Resource Type: Publication.

Primary Audience: Administrative Staff Clinicians PCAs
Secondary Audience: Board of Directors C-Suite (CEOs, CFOs, CIO, COOs, CMOs, etc.) Enabling Staff Outreach Staff

Language: English

Developed by: HITEQ (See other resources developed by this organization).

Resource Summary: Food insecurity has doubled since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020, and has tripled among families with children. Not having enough access to food is a key contributor to negative health outcomes for adults and children alike, and it is important now more than ever for health centers to identify and support patients who are experiencing food insecurity. This resource is designed to support health center efforts to identify and assist patients who are experiencing food insecurity. It outlines key considerations around integrating social determinants of health (SDoH)-related screening and intervention into the electronic health record (EHR) workflow, highlights standardized screening tools and data elements to monitor the prevalence of food insecurity among patients, and describes several strategies to meet food-related needs. The downloadable guide, available in the Documents to Download section below, is split into the following sections, each of which draws on foundational work from health centers and national partners: Integrate your screening strategy into your EHR workflow-- several case studies are included Select a standardized tool to identify food insecurity-- several tools with their related EHR integration and workflow considerations are outlined Monitoring food insecurity among patients-- tips about coding and dashboarding are provided Connecting patients to available resources

This project is supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of an award totaling $6,625,000 with 0 percentage financed with non-governmental sources. The contents are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by HRSA, HHS, or the U.S. Government. For more information, please visit HRSA.gov.