UTH

Center for Health Equity

Project Details

Strengthening the Food Is Medicine Infrastructure in Texas.

Project Overview

The field of Food Is Medicine is at critical juncture, having gained national attention and recognition for its ability to prevent and address chronic health conditions. Understanding the current landscape of Food Is Medicine (FIM) initiatives in Texas is key to harnessing this momentum and translating it into policy change.? The Center for Health Equity, in partnership with the Texas Consortium for NMDOH, is building out a three-pronged approach to organizing and strengthening the FIM landscape in Texas.

Food Is Medicine State-Wide Learning Collaborative

The field of Food Is Medicine is at critical juncture, having gained national attention and recognition for its ability to prevent and address chronic health conditions, and momentum to implement systemic changes to do so. Understanding the current landscape of Food Is Medicine (FIM) initiatives in Texas is key to harnessing this momentum and translating it into policy change.  

The Center for Health Equity is, for the first time, organizing a state wide learning collaborative that brings together academic institutions, health systems, and both for and non-profit organizations working in the Food Is Medicine space. 

The Center for Health Equity is applying a three- pronged approach to collate and implement best practices: 1) conduct a comprehensive landscape scan to determine what FIM programs are currently ongoing or in the pipeline across the state; 2) map these programs to identify research hubs and gaps in coverage; and 3) develop a FIM learning collaborative to share best practices and encourage the development of additional programs. The aims are further outlined below:  

Aim 1: Conduct a comprehensive landscape scan to understand what work is currently underway in Texas. The landscape scan systematically and comprehensively analyzes FIM programs in each region, and classifies them by, at minimum, FIM program type, stage of development, and population served. The landscape scan builds off of the current Texas Consortium Program Index survey, further developing it to capture geographical information about programs. The survey also serves as a first point of connection, gathering program implementer information to connect them in working groups.    

 

Aim 2: Once the programs have been identified, their location is mapped by Dr. Ryan Ramphul. The current map can be viewed here and under the resources for this project.   

 

Aim 3: As part of identifying and mapping programs, the Center is connecting program leads through learning collaboratives. These learning collaboratives will regularly convene FIM practitioners designing, implementing, or evaluating programs to connect and share their experiences and learnings in the space. The learning collaboratives will develop best practices for FIM programs in Texas through working groups focused around topics such as: community based organizations (CBOs) readiness to implement FIM programs; developing health system readiness to screen for SDOH needs and implement FIM programs; determining standardized measurements to evaluate the impact of FIM programs; promoting best practices for FIM evaluation, identifying long-term sustainability opportunities for FIM across the state; and others as identified by the learning collaboratives.  

Get involved by reaching out to Naomi Tice at [email protected]. 

Project Contact: Naomi Tice, MPH

 

 

UTHealth Houston School of Public Health Team 

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Shreela Sharma, PhD, RDN, LD

Director, Center for Health Equity

Professor and Vice Chair, Department of Epidemiology

[email protected]

 

 

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Ryan Ramphul, PhD

Assistant Professor, Department of Epidemiology

[email protected]

 

 

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Project Manager

Naomi Tice, MPH

Center for Health Equity

[email protected]

 

 

Project Partners

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Elena Marks, JD, MPH

Co-Founder

Texas Consortium for NMDOH

 

 

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Jacquie Klotz, MA 

Program Manager

Texas Consortium for NMDOH

 

 

Collaborators 

Texas Consortium for Non-Medical Drivers of Health 

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