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4 Ways to Engage with Patients, Nutritionally

Marianne Aiello, for HealthLeaders Media, October 3, 2012

2.Conduct on-site health screenings

Anyone visiting  a farmers' market already has healthy living on their mind, which makes it the perfect time to give shoppers the opportunity to learn more about their health.

Ohio's Parma Hospital is hosting its first farmers' market this week and will offer a variety of health screenings to community members.

Setting up a few screening booths in highly visible areas is a great way to remind shoppers that a healthcare provider is sponsoring the market and that the health of the community is important to your organization.

After screening for blood pressure, BMI, and other measures,  capitalize on the interaction by prompting the patient to take the next step, such as visiting your website, joining your email list, or scheduling an appointment.

3.Introduce population health initiatives

Baptist Memorial Hospital–DeSoto in Mississippi used its farmers' market to launch an initiative promoting healthier lifestyles. The one-off farmers' market, held in August, attracted more than 500 community members.

"We have to start helping people live healthier lives, and this farmers' market was a great way to remind the community how important a heart-healthy diet is. And it gave us an opportunity to have the farmers in the community sell some of their goods. So all around it was a great success and we hope to do more projects like that," Arie Szatkowski, MD, quality medical director told The Commercial Appeal.

The hospital hopes to parlay that success into a 12-week program called HEAL (Healthy Eating, Active Lifestyles), which it is overseeing in conjunction with the local parks and recreation department. 

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