The Montana Produce Prescription Collaborative (MTPRx): Mainstreaming Grassroots Projects to Understand Program Impacts on Diabetes and Cholesterol
The Community Food and Agriculture Coalition (CFAC) connects local farmers and families to nurture a strong regional food system. Its food access programming increases access to nutritious, culturally appropriate foods and ensures that local food markets are accessible and equitable. This grant supports CFAC’s expansion and evaluation of their Montana Produce Prescription Collaborative. The collaborative is a Produce Prescription (PPR) program that helps health care providers prescribe locally sourced fruits and vegetables to patients and covers the cost of those items. The PPR program is primarily funded through the USDA's Gus Schumacher Nutrition Incentive Program (GusNIP), which incentivizes people to purchase fresh fruits and vegetables. Funds from MHCF will allow CFAC to expand the PPR cohort to three to five new sites. Funds will help with technical assistance and food prescriptions for culturally relevant protein sources not covered by GusNIP (such as bison, lake trout, and beans). Partners committing to participate in expansion sites are All Nations Health Center, Partnership Health Center, and FAST Blackfeet. The project will also allow CFAC to evaluate the program's impact on nutrition and related health outcomes among food-insecure people with diet-related chronic medical issues such as diabetes and high cholesterol.