Louisiana health system partners with supermarkets to promote health

Every health system and insurance plan would like to see those they serve develop healthier habits, but that's very tricky to pull off, as incentives often don't work. Still, that doesn't mean health leaders are giving up.

One new model for promoting health comes from Louisiana's Ochsner Health System, a non-profit that consists of seven hospitals and 35 health centers in the southeast part of the state. Ochsner has partnered with supermarket chain Rouses to provide consumer education on better food and lifestyle choices. The campaign also emphasizes regular medical checkups and disease prevention.

The new program, "Choose Healthy," includes a website that helps individuals to draw up grocery lists that include healthy foods. Ochsner is also placing "shelf talkers"--tags that show which foods are healthy--at 35 Rouses locations. The Rouses locations will also offer Ochsner eating recommendations in the supermarket branches, educational materials, and free health screenings such as blood pressure and cholesterol tests.

In addition to these efforts, Choose Healthy will encourage consumers to buy locally grown and produced vegetables and seafood, in an effort to both boost their health and help the local economy.

To learn more about the program:
- read this HealthLeaders Media piece

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A wellness phone?