Clinic-to-community models to address food insecurity
Food insecurity (FI)—unreliable access to a sufficient quantity of affordable, nutritious food—is a social and economic condition with direct and indirect consequences, including poor dietary intake, poor physical and mental health, hospitalizations, stress, reduced academic achievement, and fetal epigenetic changes. Food insecurity affects 16.6% of US households with children. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and the American Diabetes Association have each recently highlighted the clinical relevance of FI through funding initiatives, screening recommendations for children, or treatment recommendations.
The success of efforts to identify and address FI in clinical settings depends on developing innovative processes and programs to address the gap between the clinic and the community. We challenge communities to invest in stronger community referral support, such as augmented 2-1-1, identify strategies to implement dual enrollment, and support clinicians with training and infrastructures to successfully connect children living in food-insecure households with community-based resources.
Barnidge E, Stenmark S, Seligman H. Clinic-to-community models to address food insecurity. JAMA Pediatr. 2017;171(6):507-508. PMID: 28384732. DOI: 10.1001/jamapediatrics.2017.0067.