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Update from the GBFB Health and Research Department

At The Greater Boston Food Bank (GBFB), we know food insecurity costs Massachusetts $2.4 billion in avoidable health-related expenses annually. To appropriately address food insecurity, we first need to identify who is experiencing it. That is why we advocate for medical clinicians and providers to screen and intervene for food insecurity, especially among our Community Health Center partnerships.

To advance this practice among clinicians, we need to raise awareness around the importance of food insecurity screening as well as provide practical information about how to screen. For example, the Hunger Vital SignTM is an accessible tool for food insecurity screening. On April 28, the Massachusetts Medical Society (MMS) passed a food insecurity resolution with a 183-28 vote!

GBFB’s Senior Director of Public Health and Research, Dr. Kathryn Brodowski, and Community Health and Research Associate, Andrea Martinez, drafted the initial resolution and won full support from MMS’ Committee on Nutrition and Physical Activity. Dr. Brodowski has been a member of this committee for the past year. From there, the resolution went for a vote at MMS’ annual meeting.

Prior to the vote, Dr. Brodowski presented an overview of the food insecurity resolution and . Thanks to Dr. Brodowski’s instrumental role in passing this resolution, she was invited to be vice-chair of the Committee on Nutrition and Physical Activity.

This commitment by the Massachusetts Medical Society advances our work on hunger and health and is a major milestone in addressing food insecurity and creating a hunger-free Massachusetts.

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