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How to Support Healthcare Workers’ Holistic Health & Wellbeing

Freshly
May 9, 2022

Healthcare workers have been on the front lines helping those in need make it through the pandemic. Due to the heavy workloads, stressful environments, and irregular schedules, many healthcare workers often sacrifice their own physical and emotional needs in an effort to provide care for their patients. As put by The American Hospital Association: “delivering high-quality patient care depends on our ability to recruit, train, retain and support our healthcare workers.” They are the backbone of your healthcare facility and yet, burnout is at record highs. 

Click here to learn how to participate in our Amazing Heroes Campaign to celebrate and support your healthcare workers who make patient care their passion.

The importance of health and wellbeing for healthcare staff

A healthy diet is often overlooked by–and inaccessible to– busy healthcare staff, yet it's the root cause of various health issues like obesity, diabetes, and other nutrition-related health conditions such as anxiety and depression. However, according to the American Nurses Association Health Risk Appraisal, only 56% of nurses have access to healthy food during work. Some of the main factors include:

  • Staff Shortages: With the Great Resignation hospital kitchens are short staffed which impacts the ability to feed healthcare workers properly.
  • Lack of access: Vending machines are often filled with unhealthy snacks and lack healthy grab 'n go options onsite.
  • Stress: A report found that 67% of nurse leaders named mental health and well-being among their top three challenges. When they get home, this exhaustion can lead to grabbing something unhealthy instead of cooking something fresh for themselves and their family.

Why offering meal solutions is an innovative way to support healthcare workers

With the new normal, increasingly healthcare organizations are realizing the importance of showing frontline worker appreciation, ensuring workplace wellbeing, and increasing retention rates. One of the most efficient ways they’re tackling health-related issues is by providing access to nutritious foods.

As put by Tom Futch, VP of Freshly for Business, “Many hospitals are sending meals to their employees at home. And again, not to just support the employee, but [also in an effort to support] their work-life balance. So if you have a physician or a nurse or a staff worker that's working around the clock, that puts stressors on the whole family. And so many organizations are starting to realize that and are stepping forward. It might just be an appreciation gift; we're seeing that happen. We're also seeing a situation where maybe for a period of time the organization will do that from a subsidized perspective.”

How meal programs help support healthcare workers

No matter how you start a meal program it's going to be beneficial to your staff. Adequate nutrition impacts everyone in the workforce and reduces health-related risks. Providing healthy meals as part of your employee benefits shows healthcare workers how grateful you are for their hard work. ​​Show your staff gratitude with a meal subsidy or provide a stipend for healthy meals. For staff members who are very busy simply offer a nutritious grab ’n go option from our smart vending machine.

And supporting your healthcare workers has never been easier than with Freshly for Business. As put by Jenna Amos, Head of Nutrition at Freshly, “Healthy eating doesn't have to be a salad, and some people may love that, but I think the typical [critique], from what I've seen in my career about healthy food, is it doesn't taste as good. Meanwhile, Freshly meals taste delicious while still providing great nutrition.”

Contact us to find out more about how Freshly for Business can be part of your health and wellbeing strategy, or download Navigating the Next Era of the Workplace to learn how employers can build a culture of wellbeing and engagement.

Navigating the Next Era of the Workplace in 2022

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How to Support Healthcare Workers’ Holistic Health & Wellbeing