MyNorth News Service

(Press Release provided by Munson Healthcare)

TRAVERSE CITY: The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services announced this week that Munson Medical Center is one of seven local coalitions around the state to receive funding to implement Gov. Rick Snyder’s Michigan Health and Wellness 4 x 4 Plan with the addition of Munson Food Prescriptions.

The hospital will receive a nearly $50,000 grant to put a fruit and vegetable prescription program in place.

The Prescription for Health program includes nutrition education in addition to participants receiving a food prescription and voucher to be used to purchase fruits and vegetables. It is modeled after a successful program in Washtenaw County called “Prescription for Health.”

“This will be a wonderful community collaboration between Munson’s Family Practice Clinic, the Farmer’s Market at GT Commons, Dr. Jean Kerver of  MSU, and our Munson Community Health and dietary staff who will provide nutrition education and coordination of this effort,” said Christi Nowak, manager of Community Health. “We are very excited to help increase access to fresh fruits and vegetables in our community.”

While the grant starts this month and continues through September 30, 2016, the food prescription program will likely begin in the spring because of the logistics required to get it set up. The Village at Grand Traverse Commons Farmer’s Market operates year around.

The state chose programs that use evidenced-based strategies to increase healthy eating and physical activity with a focus on the prevention of obesity and other chronic diseases.

“Through partnerships with local community organizations, we can improve health and wellness by creating healthier communities and empowering people to make healthy choices,” said Nick Lyon, director of MDHHS. “These initiatives will help increase the availability of healthy foods and enhance access to safe places for physical activity, helping to make the healthy choice the easy choice for Michigan residents.”

The governor’s 4 x 4 Plan calls for people to practice four healthy behaviors:
• Maintain a healthy diet
• Engage in regular exercise
• Get an annual physical examination
• Avoid all tobacco use

It also calls for people to be aware of four key health measures tied to chronic diseases:
• Body mass index
• Blood pressure
• Cholesterol level
• Blood sugar level

More information on the state program is at

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Photo(s) by Munson Healthcare