As guests walk the halls of Nashville General Hospital, they will encounter a plethora of artwork of all styles. On February 12, Nashville General Hospital Foundation hosted its third annual Open House and Art Tour. The highlighted feature this year included a ribbon cutting for the new Food Pharmacy, located on the lower level of the hospital.
The Food Pharmacy was developed as the hospital recognized the need for patients to receive the nutrition needed to better their health. Dr. Webb, board chair, referred to NGH as the “original community hospital” as he recognized the efforts of staff members of the Food and Nutrition services. Board members noted that the population that is served by NGH often has “food insecurities” from having to choose whether to purchase food or medications.
“I have often wondered ‘what is the quality of food’ consumed by our patients?” Dr. Webb said. “As we treat our patients, they can learn about their condition as it relates to foods that should be consumed, and the food bank is a resource that can help in maintaining their health.”
Webb also noted that MGH is expanding its footprint as it has partnered with MDHA. From that partnership, the Edgehill Clinic will open on Feb. 14.
How does the artwork correlate with the health of the patients?
“We are taking a holistic approach to the well-being of the patients through the artwork and the food bank,” said Dianna Wohlfahrt. She noted that when a person is not feeling well, and passes a picture of a meadow or sees artwork such as the fish tank on the cancer ward, “it’s therapeutic.”
“Healthcare used to be about solving the acute issue,” Wohlfahrt said. “We have resources that will impact the community by teaching how to cook and what you should eat according to the patient’s condition like diabetes, heart disease, and kidney disease. People often have multiple issues.
Caring for someone is not just meeting their initial needs; you’re making a commitment to their care, and that’s what makes us different.”
Dr. Webb said: “We are trying to keep our population healthy. The artwork is a part of the therapeutic environment where the Food Pharmacy is more direct because there is so much food insecurity in our community.”
The Art Tour included the Nashville General Hospital Foundation’s Art Collection of Omari Booker; Mary P. Schatz, M.D., in memory of Walter F. Schatz; a sculpture by Bruce Peebles and Sylvia Hyman; a photograph by Mary Anne Howland and Susan O’Neill; and original oil by Vikki Mammina.