The Boston Medical Center is giving more than medical care to its patients- they have a thriving rooftop garden on their rooftop that supplies the patients with 7000 pounds of organic produce every year.
In the 2500-square-foot farm, you can find collard greens, bok choy, kale, tomatoes, cucumbers, carrots, eggplant, peppers, squash, beans, and so many different herbs.
The plants are grown with organic soil and in recycled crates from milk. They’re also pollinated by two beehives onsite. These beehives have two purposes in their garden- nourish the plants and give home to the bees.
Food Is Medicine, Says the Hospital
According to the hospital’s senior director of support services, David Maffeo, food is medicine and that’s why they’re doing what they’re doing. Today, it’s very hard to acquire locally-grown food and he believes this is something they owe to their patients and their community.
The farm works through the method of composting. A farmer who manages the farm, Lindsay Allen, explains that she considers this farm to be an ecosystem.
She notes that 72 percent of the patients in this hospital are considered underserved and so, they don’t have access to healthy and locally-grown food. This farm is an effort to change this dissatisfaction.
Allen finds hospital food to be gross which has always been ironic because when we’re ill and sensitive, we need proper nourishment.
Bravo, Boston Medical Center
In this facility, staff and patients can also attend courses of cooking, nutrition, and gardening, as well as free foods for families with low income.
In this way, the hospital is providing its community with a more holistic approach to wellness and thus, prevents them from needing hospitals in the first place.