The Healthy Food in Health Care program launched its Mid-Atlantic program in 2017. Previously, Health Care Without Harm supported efforts in Maryland through partnerships with regional organizations. The Mid-Atlantic network has grown to over 100 participating health care facilities in the six-state region (Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia plus Washington D.C.).

The Mid-Atlantic Healthy Food in Health Care program works with these facilities to leverage their purchasing power toward the creation of a sustainable, regional food system. To meet this goal we focus activities around support for foods grown, raised, or caught in the Mid-Atlantic region and sustainable food production in the Mid-Atlantic and beyond.

The work of the Mid-Atlantic program and our hospital partners is supported by a dynamic network of state-based and regional organizations. We collaborate with a variety of organizations and agencies to enhance the support available to facilities and to leverage institutional purchasing power across sectors. Co-facilitating the Chesapeake Farm to Institution Work Group and coordination with colleges and K-12 schools further advances our collective impact.


The Mid-Atlantic Region works to create and implement regional models of the national initiatives of the Healthy Food in Health Care Program along with the following regional initiatives:  

  • Chesapeake Farm to Institution Work Group - Health Care Without Harm and the Chesapeake Foodshed Network co-facilitate the Chesapeake Farm-to-Institution Work Group in the Mid-Atlantic region. Participants of this group include hospital, school, and college food and nutrition services, population health professionals, agricultural professionals, food hubs, nonprofit organizations, extension educators, and others in the Mid-Atlantic region who are interested in learning about the common barriers, strategies for success, and cross-sector opportunities for institutions to collaborate and support a sustainable, resilient, inclusive and equitable regional food system. For 2018, interactive webinars and in-person events are being planned to address the needs of the different stakeholders in these initiatives. These are explained in the Mid-Atlantic regional newsletter. The four topics to be covered in 2018 include food safety, community benefits, sustainable procurement policy and contract language, and food hubs.
  • Pennsylvania Preferred Project - Health Care Without Harm received a Pennsylvania Specialty Crop Block Grant to assist hospitals in south-central Pennsylvania in finding and purchasing locally raised fruits and vegetables. We are working with the South Central PA Harvest Hub who is providing the produce for this initiative. The grant provides funds for additional farmers to become GAP certified (Good Agricultural Practices), which is a requirement of most hospitals. Health Care Without Harm is developing promotional materials for the participating hospitals and will assist these hospitals (who are new to the network) in developing a baseline of local produce purchasing and a system for tracking the increase of local produce purchasing through this initiative.

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  • The Chesapeake Foodshed Network hosted a two-part webinar on food safety for Mid-Atlantic producers and food processors.
    • Part one introduced regional food safety laws impacting fruit and vegetable farmers, food hubs, and distributors.
    • Part two explored how local government, extension services, food hubs, and nonprofits have been working with farmers to help them obtain required certification.
  • Six trends — and the stories behind them — illustrate how health care is transforming communities and markets through local and sustainable food initiatives. One trend of note was exemplified in the Mid-Atlantic region. Every other year, Health Care Without Harm’s Healthy Food in Health Care program releases a Menu of Change report benchmarking the impact made by health care facilities with data collected through a national survey. The report demonstrates widespread action in facilities large and small, urban, suburban, and rural.
  • The Mid-Atlantic Menu of Change Report - A 2015 Mid-Atlantic Program report with highlights and survey.