• The addition of spices and herbs to vegetables in the National School Lunch Program increased vegetable intake at an urban, economically-underserved, and predominantly African-American high school.

      D'Adamo, Christopher R; Parker, Elizabeth A; McArdle, Patrick F; Trilling, Ariel; Bowden, Brandin; Bahr-Robertson, Mary K; Keller, Kathleen L; Berman, Brian M (Elsevier Ltd., 2020-09-01)
      Vegetable intake is far below recommendations among African-American adolescents living in economically-underserved urban areas. While the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) helps overcome access barriers, vegetable intake remains challenging and novel interventions are required. A two-year, multi-phase, school-based intervention was conducted at an urban, economically-underserved, and predominantly African-American high school in Baltimore, Maryland to determine whether stakeholder-informed addition of spices and herbs to NSLP vegetables would increase intake. The stakeholder engagement phase included assessment of NSLP vegetable attitudes/preferences among 43 school stakeholders and subsequent student sensory testing. The second phase was conducted in the school cafeteria and consisted of eight weeks comparing student intake of typical vegetable recipes versus otherwise-identical recipes with spices and herbs. 4570 student lunch plates were included in the vegetable intake comparison. Vegetable intake was measured by lunch tray plate waste. Willingness to try vegetables was assessed by the difference between plate waste and estimated mean vegetable served weight. Intake of typical vegetable recipes and vegetable recipes with spices and herbs was compared with student's t-test. Chi-square test was used to compare willingness to try vegetables. Total vegetable intake was 18.2% higher (8.22 g per meal, p < 0.0001) with spices and herbs than with typical recipes. There were no differences in trying vegetables with spices and herbs, although student-led advocacy was associated with increased trying vegetables with spices and herbs (78.8% with advocacy, 67.5% without advocacy, p < 0.0001). The addition of spices and herbs to vegetables in the NSLP was feasible and associated with small increases in vegetable intake at an urban, economically-underserved, and predominantly African-American high school.
    • The Effect of an Automated Mobile Patient Engagement Application on Emergency Department Revisits: Prospective Observational Study

      Chatterjee, Pothik; Beck, Adam M; Brager, Jenna Ashley Levenson; Durand, Daniel J; D'Adamo, Christopher R (JMIR Publications, 2021-12-13)
      BACKGROUND: Revisits within 30 days to an emergency department (ED), observation care unit, or inpatient setting following patient discharge continue to be a challenge, especially in urban settings. In addition to the consequences for the patient, these revisits have a negative impact on a health system's finances in a value-based care or global budget environment. LifeBridge Health, a community health system in Maryland, United States, implemented an automated mobile patient engagement application as part of our enterprise-wide digital health strategy to improve patient engagement and reduce revisits to the ED. OBJECTIVE: The aim of this paper was to evaluate the effectiveness of a customized automated digital patient engagement application (GetWell Loop) to reduce 30-day revisits after home discharge from an ED. METHODS: The LifeBridge Health Innovation Department and ED staff from 2 participating health system hospitals collaborated with GetWellNetwork to customize their patient engagement application with automated check-in questions and other on-demand resources (eg, streaming content explaining aspects of self-care during COVID-19). An application link was emailed to adult patients discharged home from the ED. A study of ED visits for patients treated for general medicine and cardiology conditions between August 1, 2018, and July 31, 2019, was conducted using CRISP (Chesapeake Regional Information System for our Patients), Maryland's state-designated health information exchange. We also used data within GetWell Loop (GetWellNetwork) to track patient activation and engagement. The primary outcome was the number of ED patients who experienced a 30-day revisit and who did or did not activate their GetWell Loop account. Secondary outcomes included the overall activation rate and the rate of engagement as measured by the number of logins, alerts, and comments generated by patients through the application. Bivariate analysis comparing outcomes among patients who activated the GetWell Loop application to patients who did not was conducted using the Fisher exact test. Multivariate logistic regression modeling with elastic net regularization was also performed to account for potential confounders and potential collinearity of covariates. RESULTS: During this 1-year study, 1062 (27.4%) of 3866 of all emergency patients treated for general medicine or cardiology conditions, who received an invite to use the digital application, activated their account. The patients discharged from the ED, who were treated for general medicine conditions (n=2087) and who activated their GetWell Loop account, experienced a 30-day revisit rate of 17.3% (n=101) compared with 24.6% (n=369) for those who did not activate their account (P<.001). Of the patients treated for cardiology conditions (n=1779), 12.8% (n=61) of those who activated their GetWell account experienced a 30-day revisit compared with 17.7% (n=231) of those who did not activate their account (P=.01). The significance of these findings persisted after adjustment for confounding variables including age, race, sex, and payor in logistic regression modeling (adjusted odds ratio 0.75, 95% CI 0.62-0.92; P=.006). CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggest that a significant percentage of patients are willing to utilize a digital application following ED discharge to better engage in their own care, and that usage of such digital applications may significantly reduce 30-day revisit rates. LifeBridge Health's experience demonstrates that health care systems can leverage automated mobile apps to improve patient engagement and successfully impact clinical outcomes at scale.