Last week, DC Greens’ Luisa Furstenberg-Beckman, MPH, spoke with The Aspen Institute’s Food and Society Program about the importance of making Food Is Medicine interventions more accessible to the broader community.

“Nonprofits should not be the sole entities running Food Is Medicine interventions,” says Beckman. “Food is a human right, and everyone should have access to nutritious food that supports their health goals and their outcomes. So embedding Food Is Medicine into the health care system is truly the best way to achieve this goal.

Food Is Medicine interventions, like DC Greens’ award-winning Produce Rx program, use food-based interventions to prevent, treat, and manage chronic, diet-related illnesses.   

This approach increases access to critical nutrition through the health care system, ensuring individuals have access to a spectrum of nutrition services that meet their individual health and wellness needs. DC Greens and other advocates for Food Is Medicine have made strides in recent years toward broadening access to Food Is Medicine.

“[Embedding Food Is Medicine into the health care system] is already beginning to happen in multiple states across the country through 1115 waivers,” says Beckman. (You can read DC Greens’ recent letter advocating for Food Is Medicine in D.C.’s 1115 Waiver proposal here.)

Furstenberg-Beckman was joined on the panel by Jillian Griffith, MSPH, RDN, Sr. Health Partnerships Manager, Amazon Access and Aspen Institute Food Leaders Fellow; Tom McDougall, Founder and CEO, 4P Foods and Aspen Institute Food Leaders Fellow; and Pamela Schwartz, MPH, Executive Director, Community Health, Kaiser Foundation Health Plan and Hospitals.

You can watch the full panel discussion below.

Luisa Furstenberg-Beckman