Aurora, Colo. (July 11, 2017) - Children's Hospital Colorado (Children's Colorado) was recently awarded at the Colorado Healthy Hospital Compact Summit, held by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE).
Children's Colorado is the first hospital in the state to achieve platinum status, the highest recognition level, for its exceptional efforts in developing a healthy nutrition environment for its patients and their families, visitors and staff. Children's Colorado South Campus, located in Highlands Ranch, Colo., also achieved the same level of recognition.
When CPDHE formed the Colorado Healthy Hospital Compact in 2014, it created a common mission among Colorado hospitals to make organizational changes that promoted health and wellness for all who work and visit the hospital.
All Compact hospitals agree to offer and promote healthier food and beverage options in the cafeterias, vending machines and patient menus, as well as follow best practices in breastfeeding support to new moms. Compact hospitals agree to work across four improvement areas: Healthy Food, Healthy Beverage, Marketing and Breastfeeding Support. Children's Colorado has met the highest standards in each of these areas.
At Children's Colorado, there is an increased focus on population health, meaning the hospital aims to address the whole picture of child health, and not just within a clinical setting.
"In order to solve clinical challenges for children, we must also address the other social determinants that impact their health and well-being," said Katie O'Connor, health promotion programs manager at Children's Colorado. "Thus, we implemented health-focused menu items available throughout the cafeteria; new, healthier kid's menu options; and expanded salad bar options. We also revised our room service menu and implemented a stoplight system of green, red and yellow labels with clear, easy-to-read nutritional information to help customers identify healthier food options."
Most recently, Children's Colorado implemented the Healthier Beverage Initiative, which removed sugar-sweetened beverages from the organization. The initiative was a catalyst for achieving platinum status at South Campus, and received an overwhelmingly positive response from staff, patients, families and visitors.
"Although we have made incredible strives to improve our nutrition environment and meet the standards of the Compact, this is just the beginning. These efforts will be ongoing, and we will continue to make improvements and take steps to continue promoting health and wellness for our patients, families and staff," said Dr. David Brumbaugh, associate chief medical officer at Children's Colorado.
Learn more about the Healthy Hospital initiative and how Children's Colorado is inspiring a healthier culture.
Hollon Kohtz, Children's Hospital Colorado