MedStar Health Partners to Create Food Rx Program at MedStar Good Samaritan

BALTIMORE— In a collaborative program unique to the state, MedStar Health will premiere Food Rx, an evidence-based medically tailored food and nutritional support program for patients with multiple complex chronic conditions, and/or food insecurity, who are referred through the Collaborative Care Program at MedStar Good Samaritan Hospital. The program is supported by a grant awarded earlier this year by the Maryland Community Health Resources Commission (CHRC).

Teaming with Maryland Food Bank, Hungry Harvest, Sodexo, and the American Heart Association, the program is designed to improve clinical outcomes for chronic disease, eliminate food barriers for vulnerable populations, and decrease racial and socioeconomic health disparities.

“The Community Health Resources Commission is thrilled to support this innovative program,” commented Mark Luckner, CHRC Executive Director. “This community-based program will help bring much needed services and support to vulnerable residents impacted by food insecurity and will help support the state’s overall goal of addressing diabetes.” 

“We know that food plays a huge role in one’s overall health,” said Lucas Carlson, MD, MPH, regional medical director for Care Transformation at MedStar Health. “For instance, if the patient with diabetes or heart failure is discharged from the hospital but does not have the ability to maintain a diet appropriate for their condition, they’re at high risk of ending up back in the emergency department. Ultimately, food is medicine and is a necessary component of chronic disease management.”

Located in 16,000-square-feet of newly renovated space on the hospital’s second floor, the Collaborative Care Program (CCP) is an innovative new approach to coordinate primary and specialty care for patients living with multiple complex conditions. In the CCP, patients are evaluated and treated by an intensive core medical team meant to complement their longitudinal primary care. There, they are seen by the program Community Health Advocate and Dietician, who determines the patient’s eligibility for Food Rx.

Once enrolled, patients will receive weekly shipments of fresh produce, including bread and eggs, through program partners, Hungry Harvest. Produce shipments will be titrated based on household size, ranging from 10 to 22 pounds of fresh produce per week.

"The MedStar Health FoodRx program perfectly marries near term compassionate care with long term strategies for sustained wellness,” said Evan Lutz, of Hungry Harvest. “By supplying the fresh fruits and veggies patients need to create a healthy eating routine, they are not only providing exceptional care today, but also seeding healthier habits for positive, sustainable health outcomes for the future.”

“Ensuring all Marylanders have access to healthy foods, regardless of income level, is a priority for us,” said Nekeisia Booyer, the Maryland Food Bank’s senior vice president of Programs. “We’re grateful for the opportunity to collaborate on this program to help improve health outcomes for MedStar Health patients while bringing even more high-quality food into the hands and homes of those who need it most.”

The Maryland Food Bank has partnered to help stock the program’s on-site food pantry, which is embedded within the CCP clinic. Here the Food Rx dietician works with the patient to provide nutrition education and assists the patient in selecting non-perishable goods and frozen proteins, which are provided by Sodexo.

The Food Rx program will include direct education from the program dietician with support from the American Heart Association. This will include access to evidence-based seminar series, nutritional guidelines, and education events in partnership with the American Heart Association and it’s Simple Cooking with Heart Kitchen, such as cooking classes/demonstrations and education for participants.


About MedStar Health
At MedStar Health, we use the best of our minds and the best of our hearts to serve our patients, those who care for them, and our communities. Our 30,000 associates and 4,700 affiliated physicians are committed to living this promise through our core SPIRIT values—Service, Patient first, Integrity, Respect, Innovation, and Teamwork—across our more than 300 locations including 10 hospitals, ambulatory, and urgent care centers. As the medical education and clinical partner of Georgetown University, MedStar Health is training future physician leaders to care for the whole person and is advancing care through the MedStar Health Research Institute. From our telemedicine and urgent care services to the region’s largest home health agency, we’re committed to providing high-quality health care that’s also easy and convenient for our patients. At MedStar Health—It’s how we treat people. Learn more at MedStarHealth.org.

About the Maryland Food Bank
The Maryland Food Bank (MFB) is a nonprofit hunger-relief organization dedicated to feeding people, strengthening communities, and ending hunger for more Marylanders. Since March 2020, the food bank’s statewide food assistance network distributed the equivalent of 66 million meals in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. MFB will continue to meet the immediate needs of vulnerable communities while collaborating with partners to provide resources beyond food and address root causes of hunger so that more Marylanders can become financially stable and thrive. To learn more about the Maryland Food Bank, visit www.mdfoodbank.org.

About Maryland Community Health Resource Commission
The Maryland Community Health Resources Commission (CHRC) was created by the Maryland General Assembly in 2005 to expand access to health care services in underserved communities in Maryland. The CHRC is an independent commission operating within the Maryland Department of Health (MDH), whose 11 members are appointed by the Governor. Since its inception, the CHRC has awarded 347 grants totaling $85.9 million, supporting programs in every jurisdiction of the state. These programs have collectively served more than 504,000 Marylanders, and grants awarded by the CHRC have enabled grantees to leverage $31.8 million in additional federal and private/non-profit resources.

Media Contact

Debra Schindler
Regional Director, Media & Public Relations, MedStar Health Baltimore
Phone: 410-274-1260
[email protected]

Breast Center at MedStar Good Samaritan Hospital Earns National Accreditation
Coveted Recognition Made by American College of Surgeons

BALTIMORE— The Breast Center at MedStar Good Samaritan Hospital has earned a three-year accredited status by the National Accreditation Program for Breast Centers (NAPBC), a quality program administered by  the American College of Surgeons (ACS). The achievement puts MedStar Good Samaritan Hospital among an elite cadre of hospital breast programs, having demonstrated compliance with NAPBC quality standards that address a center’s leadership, clinical services, research, community outreach, professional education, and quality improvement for patients.

“The accreditation of this program is significant because it reflects our commitment to our patients and to the highest standards of breast cancer care and a quality of process and operations at all levels of the organization,” said Maen Farha, MD, medical director of the MedStar Good Samaritan Hospital Breast Center. “Patients can come here fully confident that they are getting the highest level of personalized, comprehensive and compassionate care reflecting MedStar Good Samaritan Hospital values.”

Patients receiving care at MedStar Good Samaritan have access to information on clinical trials and new treatment options, genetic counseling, and patient-centered services including psychosocial support, rehabilitation services, and survivorship care. 

Accreditation by the NAPBC is granted only to those programs that are committed to providing the best possible care to patients with breast cancer. The NAPBC provides the structure and resources develop and operate a high-quality breast center and accredited program. Patients receiving care at this NAPBC-accredited center have access to:

  • Comprehensive care, including a full range of state-of-the-art services
  • A multidisciplinary team approach to coordinate the best treatment options
  • Information about ongoing clinical trials and new treatment options

MedStar Good Samaritan will undergo a NAPBC site visit every three years.


About MedStar Health

At MedStar Health, we use the best of our minds and the best of our hearts to serve our patients, those who care for them, and our communities. Our 30,000 associates and 4,700 affiliated physicians are committed to living this promise through our core SPIRIT values—Service, Patient first, Integrity, Respect, Innovation, and Teamwork—across our more than 300 locations including 10 hospitals, ambulatory, and urgent care centers. As the medical education and clinical partner of Georgetown University, MedStar Health is training future physician leaders to care for the whole person and is advancing care through the MedStar Health Research Institute. From our telemedicine and urgent care services to the region’s largest home health agency, we’re committed to providing high-quality health care that’s also easy and convenient for our patients. At MedStar Health—It’s how we treat people. Learn more at MedStarHealth.org.

Media Contact

Debra Schindler
Regional Director, Media & Public Relations, MedStar Health Baltimore
Phone: 410-274-1260
[email protected]

MedStar Health Cancer Network Lights Hospitals Blue for Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month

In honor Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month, several of our hospitals are illuminating their campuses in blue to raise awareness about the second leading cause of cancer deaths in the U.S.

“In this country, colon cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death, but it doesn’t have to be, said Dr. David Stein, regional chief of surgery and colorectal surgeon. “With the screenings, we can find polyps, or abnormal growths, before they turn into cancer. Treatments are most effective in early stages of cancer.”

Read more.

MedStar Health Partners with Baltimore Organizations and Stoop Storytelling Tonight

microphone and empty stool with spotlight onBALTIMORE, MD — MedStar Health and nine Baltimore organizations are partnering with the Stoop Storytelling series to present Of Substance, a free virtual forum where seven candid people will share their stories of thrill, peril, regret and their complicated relationships with drugs and alcohol. The event includes a special musical performance by Jeremiah Lloyd Harmon, an American Idol Top 10 Finalist, and will stream live tonight at 7 p.m. on each partner Facebook page, or here.

The Stoop Storytelling series is a Baltimore-based live show and podcast that features people who share their true, personal journey. Partnering with MedStar Health are Jewish Community Services, Behavioral Health System Baltimore, Catholic Charities, Baltimore Jewish Council, Maryland Association for the Treatment of Opioid Dependence, NAMI Metro Baltimore, Creative Alliance, Goucher College and Baltimore Magazine, to bring awareness to the impact Of Substance use, drive education, prevention and treatment.

SAMHSA (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration) has identified September as Recovery Month to increase awareness and understanding of mental health and substance use disorders. Of Substance offers inspiring firsthand accounts of recovery that demonstrate the effectiveness of treatment and may mitigate stigma and misconceptions that potentially discourage others from seeking help.

"Jewish Community Services is committed to raising awareness about the potential risks of using drugs and alcohol," said Joan Grayson Cohen, Esq., LCSW-C, executive director for Jewish Community Services. "Through our work in schools and in the community, we know that young adults can be particularly vulnerable to some of the unintended, potentially life-changing social, emotional and physical consequences. JCS is proud to partner in this important evening of sharing and thoughtful conversation.”

“MedStar Health knows the impact substance use in our communities, and the first step that leads to solutions is to eradicate stigma that will provide education and courage to receive treatment,” said Ryan Moran, director of Community Health for MedStar Health. “This event offers the chance to do that through the power of sharing lived experiences with substance use. Our organization is proud to partner with some of the most important organizations in the Baltimore region to bring this forum to the communities we serve.”

For information, visit – bit.do/stoop-ofsubstance.

Media Contact

Debra Schindler
Regional Director, Media & Public Relations, MedStar Health Baltimore
Office: 410-554-2496
Cell: 410-274-1260
[email protected]

MedStar Health to Stream Interactive Wound Care and Limb Salvaging Webcast

BALTIMORE—MedStar Health will stream Healing Wounds, Saving Limbs webcast, live on Facebook and YouTube from MedStar Union Memorial Hospital on Thursday, Feb. 6 at 7 p.m. WMAR ABC2 News anchor Jamie Costello will host and moderate a panel of five wound care experts, as viewers are encouraged to submit questions during the interactive forum.

MedStar Health is jointly accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME), the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE), and the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC). Physicians, physician assistants and nurse practitioners who participate in the live stream can receive a maximum of 1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™.

The panelists from MedStar Good Samaritan Hospital are experts in wound healing and limb preservation, representing plastic and reconstructive surgery, vascular surgery, and podiatric surgery. They are: D. Zachary Martin, MD; Kevin Brown, MD; Tiffany Hoh, DPM; Paul Carroll, DPM; and Alayna Blazakis, DNP. Endocrinologist Malek Cheikh will also appear on set to discuss the impact diabetes has on healing wounds.

Topics of discussion will include how to prevent non-healing wounds, approach to wound care and limb salvaging, multi-disciplinary care, Charcot foot treatment options, diabetic-related neuropathy, injuries, and hyperbaric oxygen treatment.

The Center for Wound Healing, Hyperbaric Medicine, and Limb Salvage at MedStar Good Samaritan Hospital, in partnership with MedStar Georgetown University Hospital, provides patients with superior quality, safety, satisfaction, and the best possible outcomes for non-healing wounds

Meet the panelists

D. Zachary Martin, MD: Dr. Martin is board-certified plastic surgeon for MedStar Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, practicing at MedStar Good Samaritan Hospital. He has served in executive roles at MedStar Good Samaritan Hospital since 2006. Dr. Martin currently serves as the Medical Director of the Hyperbaric Medicine and Wound Healing Center, Chief of the Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, and Attending Plastic Surgeon at MedStar Good Samaritan Hospital.

Kevin A. Brown, MD: Dr. Brown is a board-certified vascular surgeon with MedStar Heart & Vascular Institute at MedStar Good Samaritan Hospital MedStar and MedStar Union Memorial Hospital. Dr. Brown is a 13-year US Navy Veteran, having served as the Director of Surgical Services at the NATO Role 3 Combat Hospital in Kandahar, Afghanistan. He also served as department head of the main operating room onboard the USNS COMFORT during hurricane Maria relief efforts in Puerto Rico.

Tiffany Hoh, DPM: Dr. Hoh is a board-qualified podiatric surgeon practicing at MedStar Good Samaritan Hospital and MedStar Franklin Square Medical Center. Dr. Hoh has received specialized training in diabetic limb salvage at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital’s Center for Wound Healing. She treats many foot and ankle ailments, focusing on complex lower extremity wounds, diabetic limb salvage, and foot and ankle reconstructive surgery.

Paul Carroll, DPM: Dr. Carroll is a board-qualified and fellowship trained podiatric surgeon for MedStar Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, practicing at MedStar Good Samaritan Hospital and MedStar Franklin Square Medical Center, where he is the medical director of the Wound Healing Center. His clinical skill was recognized during residency with the 2015 Diabetic Limb Salvage Award. An active member of the community, Dr. Carroll serves as a medical volunteer at the Boston and New York City marathons. He is committed to supporting his patients’ podiatric health, one step at a time.

Alayna Blazakis, DNP: Dr. Blazakis is a nurse practitioner with a Doctorate of Nursing practice, with MedStar Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery and the Center for Wound Healing, Hyperbaric Medicine and Limb Salvage at MedStar Good Samaritan Hospital. She specializes in adult and gerontology primary care with certifications in wound healing and hyperbaric medicine.

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About MedStar Health

MedStar Health is a not-for-profit health system dedicated to caring for people in Maryland and the Washington, D.C., region, while advancing the practice of medicine through education, innovation and research. MedStar’s 30,000 associates, 6,000 affiliated physicians, 10 hospitals, ambulatory care and urgent care centers, and the MedStar Health Research Institute are recognized regionally and nationally for excellence in medical care. As the medical education and clinical partner of Georgetown University, MedStar trains more than 1,100 medical residents annually. MedStar Health’s patient-first philosophy combines care, compassion and clinical excellence with an emphasis on customer service. For more information, visit MedStarHealth.org.

Media Contact

Debra Schindler
Regional Director, Media & Public Relations, MedStar Health Baltimore
Office: 410-554-2496
Cell: 410-274-1260
[email protected]

MedStar Health Names David Stein MD, Regional Chief of Surgery

BALTIMORE— MedStar Health has named colorectal surgeon, David Stein, MD, Regional Chief of Surgery for MedStar Health and Chairman of Surgery at MedStar Franklin Square Medical Center.

In the dual leadership role, Dr. Stein will oversee quality, safety and market leadership initiatives for MedStar Franklin Square Medical Center, MedStar Harbor, MedStar Good Samaritan and MedStar Union Memorial Hospitals, and lead a sweeping optimization plan for the new 82,000-square foot surgical pavilion now under construction at MedStar Franklin Square. Read more.

Media Contact

Debra Schindler
Regional Director, Media & Public Relations, MedStar Health Baltimore
Office: 410-554-2496
Cell: 410-274-1260
[email protected]

MedStar Health Gives Infiltrative Cardiomyopathy Patients New Hope for Life

BALTIMORE—MedStar Health Heart and Vascular Institute has launched a program at MedStar Union Memorial and MedStar Good Samaritan hospitals to diagnose, treat and research two life-threatening heart conditions that often go unrecognized, and is developing the program into a nationally-recognized center of excellence that has no peer in the region.  Read more.

Media Contacts

Debra Schindler
Regional Director, Media & Public Relations, MedStar Health Baltimore
Office: 410-554-2496
Cell: 410-274-1260
[email protected]

Carrie Wells
Public Relations Specialist, MedStar Health Baltimore
443-613-1569 
[email protected]

MedStar Health to Stream Interactive Cancer Webcast on Facebook and YouTube

BALTIMORE—Cancer experts from the MedStar Health Cancer Network will discuss cancer prevention, detection and treatment options during a free interactive forum that will stream live from the MedStar Bel Air Medical Campus to Facebook and YouTube, Tuesday, Nov. 5 from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Understanding Cancer: The Facts You Need to Know, features WMAR ABC News anchor Jamie Costello as the event’s host and moderator. Read more.

Media Contacts

Debra Schindler
Regional Director, Media & Public Relations, MedStar Health Baltimore
Office: 410-554-2496
Cell: 410-274-1260
[email protected]

Carrie Wells
Public Relations Specialist, MedStar Health Baltimore
443-613-1569 
[email protected]

MedStar Health Opens New Vein Center in Baltimore

MedStar Health has opened a new Vein Center in Baltimore that will be led by vascular surgeon Margaret Arnold, MD, FACS, who will bring a strong clinical background in the treatment of vascular and venous diseases and will focus her practice on treating varicose veins. Read more.

Media Contacts

Debra Schindler
Regional Director, Media & Public Relations, MedStar Health Baltimore
Office: 410-554-2496
Cell: 410-274-1260
[email protected]

Carrie Wells
Public Relations Specialist, MedStar Health Baltimore
443-613-1569 
[email protected]

Partnership with Violence Reduction Program Expands to Two More Hospitals

BALTIMORE—MedStar Health’s partnership with the violence prevention program Safe Streets, that started at MedStar Harbor Hospital earlier this year, will expand to two other Baltimore hospitals with the help of a $25,000 grant from the PNC Foundation.

MedStar Harbor positioned one part-time and one full-time associate, known as hospital responders, in its emergency department to work with both victims and perpetrators of violence. The evidence-based program aims to prevent violence before it occurs by employing street smart community members who have a lived experience with violence.

With the PNC Foundation funding, the Safe Streets program will launch at MedStar Union Memorial and MedStar Good Samaritan hospitals later this month as part of the Woodbourne-McCabe site.

“Violence is a public health threat and at MedStar Health, we feel it is part of our mission to try and reduce it,” said Ryan Moran, director of community health for MedStar Health in Baltimore. “Our existing program at MedStar Harbor Hospital, launched earlier this year, is a key way for us to serve the community and we are glad to be able to help expand it at our other hospitals.”

The responder will deescalate and mediate disputes that could otherwise lead to violence and work to prevent retaliation. The responder will also serve as a positive role model and help connect victims and perpetrators with jobs, education and other resources to help them live better lives.

“PNC is committed to serving the people and communities where we live and work,” said Laura Gamble, PNC regional president for Greater Maryland. “The Violence Reduction Program is one of the ways we invest in communities to help families and individuals access the resources they need to become self-sufficient.”

 

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About MedStar Health

MedStar Health is a not-for-profit health system dedicated to caring for people in Maryland and the Washington, D.C., region, while advancing the practice of medicine through education, innovation and research. MedStar’s 30,000 associates, 6,000 affiliated physicians, 10 hospitals, ambulatory care and urgent care centers, and the MedStar Health Research Institute are recognized regionally and nationally for excellence in medical care. As the medical education and clinical partner of Georgetown University, MedStar trains more than 1,100 medical residents annually. MedStar Health’s patient-first philosophy combines care, compassion and clinical excellence with an emphasis on customer service. For more information, visit MedStarHealth.org.

Media Contact

Debra Schindler
Regional Director, Media & Public Relations, MedStar Health Baltimore
Office: 410-554-2496
Cell: 410-274-1260
[email protected]

Carrie Wells
Public Relations Specialist, MedStar Health Baltimore
443-613-1569 
[email protected]