The Medical Center of Aurora & Project Angel Heart Use Food as Medicine
AURORA, CO, May 2, 2017 – The Medical Center of Aurora (TMCA) announced today that they are partnering with Project Angel Heart in a groundbreaking pilot program whereby TMCA dietitians will help discharged patients connect with Project Angel Heart, who will then provide healthy meals to those patients for 30 days following their hospital stay.
Patients who are released from the hospital typically have a discharge plan of care to ensure that they receive ongoing health care maintenance. This plan may include medications, follow-up doctor visits, and guidance for recovery. In this pilot program, Project Angel Heart will provide home-delivered, medically tailored food as part of the prescribed health care plan.
“The partnership is an exciting opportunity for two Colorado organizations to address the health of these patients by using food as medicine.”
TMCA patients who have recently undergone bypass surgery, experienced a heart attack, or who are diagnosed with COPD will be screened by the hospital’s registered dietitians to determine medical need for meals. Once the patient is identified and discharged from the hospital, they will immediately begin receiving medically tailored meals from Project Angel Heart. Project Angel Heart’s chefs prepare meals from scratch and an on-staff registered dietitian ensures they meet the dietary standards for heart and COPD patients, and the meals are delivered directly to the patient’s home once a week.
“The partnership between The Medical Center of Aurora and Project Angel Heart is an exciting opportunity for two Colorado organizations to address the health of these patients by using food as medicine,” says Leslie Scotland-Stewart, Director of Business Development at Project Angel Heart.
Initial results from a similar pilot at HealthONE’s North Suburban Medical Center revealed that meals greatly impacted hospital readmission rates, with zero pilot patients being readmitted within 30 days. Eighty-three percent of these patients also reported improvements in their health and energy levels.
“We want to ensure that our patients are getting everything they need to help with their recovery after they’ve left the hospital,” said Brandon Mencini, TMCA’s Vice President of Business Development. “By connecting them with Project Angel Heart, we know they will be in good hands and will get the nutrition they need as they continue their recovery.”
About The Medical Center of Aurora
The Medical Center of Aurora, the first community hospital in the Denver Metro area to receive two-time Magnet designation for nursing excellence by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), is a 346-bed acute care hospital located in Aurora, Colorado. The Medical Center of Aurora is comprised of six campuses in Aurora and Centennial, Colo., including the Main Campus, located at Interstate 225 and Mississippi, the North Campus Behavioral Health and Wellness Center, Centennial Medical Plaza, Saddle Rock ER, Spalding Rehabilitation Hospital and a medical office building at Green Valley Ranch. The Main Campus facility is a Level II Trauma Center with Primary Stroke Certification and Chest Pain Center accreditation, serving the eastern metro area and I-70 corridor. The Medical Center of Aurora received ‘A’ grades from The Leapfrog Group (Fall 2015, Fall 2016), was named Colorado’s only 2016 Leapfrog Top General Hospital, was recognized as the #4 hospital in the Denver metro area and the #4 hospital in Colorado by U.S. News & World Report (2014-2015), and was one of only nine hospitals in the country to receive the Lantern Award for Excellence in Emergency Room Care by the Emergency Nurses Association (2013).
About Project Angel Heart
Project Angel Heart is a nonprofit organization that prepares and delivers medically tailored meals, free of charge, to men, women, and children living with cancer, kidney disease, HIV/AIDS, and other life-threatening illnesses. This year, the organization will provide meals for more than 2,900 people in the Denver metro area and Colorado Springs.