The Healthy Hospitals Amendment Act (HHAA) of 2019 was recently introduced by Ward 3 Councilmember Mary Cheh in Washington, DC. The bill aims to remove all processed meat from Washington, DC hospitals and promote more plant-based options and healthful beverages to patients, visitors, and staff. By 2030, DC is estimated to have 131,194 cases of heart disease and certain regions (Ward 7 and Ward 8) have extraordinarily high rates of type 2 diabetes, two illnesses that Neal Barnard, MD—president of 12,000-member medical group Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM)—says can be alleviated by following a plant-based diet. “It’s not uncommon for patients to wake up from heart surgery to be greeted with bacon and sausage—the very foods that may have contributed to their health problems in the first place,” Barnard said. “By passing The Healthy Hospitals Amendment Act, DC can ensure that patients will no longer have their recovery undermined by the food on their hospital trays.”

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