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Norton Healthcare cafés are managed by Morrison Healthcare Food Services, an organization actively committed to fostering ways to enjoy great-tasting, healthy food through socially responsible practices and superior customer service. Together, we are offering healthy, flavorful meals; a positive dining experience; and we are influencing behavioral change in our community.

Our staff

Gene Gruver
System Business Director
Food and Nutrition Services
Norton Healthcare

Gene, grandfather and Harley Davidson owner, is the System Business Director of Food and Nutrition at Norton Healthcare. As a Morrison employee, he mirrors the company's passion for personal health and wellness. Gene has participated in Bike to Beat Cancer, benefiting Norton Cancer Institute, for 6 consecutive years. Within his role, he is responsible for all things related to food and nutrition. He goes above and beyond to not only serve our patients, employees, and community members delicious food, but nutritious food as well.

Kim Cooley
Chief Clinical Nutrition Manager
Norton Healthcare

Kim, mother of 2 and avid baker, is our Chief Clinical Nutrition Manager. Kim often spends time volunteering at her children's school, but here at work she oversees the clinical nutrition program (dietitians) at all Norton Healthcare facilities. She directly manages the Norton Hospital and Norton Children’s Hospital clinical team, while continuing to provide direct patient care daily.


Question and Answer Session Kim Cooley: Chief Clinical Nutrition Manager

       What is it like in the kitchen?  Who designs the menu/meal plan?
We have a great team and you will always find a bustle of activity in our kitchen as our talented team prepares “better-for-you” foods, including fresh steamed vegetables, hand-cut salad greens, homemade desserts, and fresh baked rolls.   Our team of chefs and nutrition experts work together to plan a healthy menu that uses fresh, wholesome ingredients. Better ingredients, which includes how we source foods and how food is raised, means better nutrition. In addition, “scratch” cook our food to ensure that healthy, flavorful, fresh foods are offered to our patients, caregivers and guests every day.     

       What did hospital food look like 10, 20, 50 years ago?
The perception of hospital food is changing for the better and we are proud of the important role we are playing in affecting that change. The predominant kinds of food that were offered in hospitals consisted mostly of what can be referred to as “comfort foods”—foods that contain little to no nutritional value. Today, we are leading with health and wellness through our innovative Great Living Menu.  

       Is there something that prompted a change in food? 
Was it based on patient feedback, state requirements, etc?As a place of healing and nurturing, Norton has a natural incentive to provide food that’s healthy. Leading nutrition and health experts agree that our communities need to eat better in order to combat the growing obesity epidemic and risks for chronic disease conditions related to lifestyle.  We are closely aligned with Norton’s wellness initiatives and working hard to change the perception of hospital food by providing restaurant quality meals that are made with scratch ingredients and whole foods. 

       What is an example of a meal that you would serve now that wasn’t served five, 10 or 15 years ago?
Stealth Health” is an important part of what we offer and incorporated into every meal. Some examples include:
·         A variety of whole grains are infused throughout the menu—whole wheat tortillas, sandwich thins, whole grain pasta, brown rice and grain blends with red rice, barley and rye, multi-grain pancakes, steel-cut oats, flaxseed and wheat germ
·         Olive oil replaces butter in our potato and side dishes
·         Meatloaf is made from a blend of natural lean ground beef and turkey
·         Sauces are created with low sodium stocks and fresh herbs
·         Smaller portions of regular (or non-diet) desserts are served
·         Adding legumes (beans) to baked goods to increase fiber and flavor
·         Leafy greens, such as spinach and basil, in soups and pesto    

   What kinds of foods/services will you NOT find in the kitchen?
At Norton Healthcare, we strive to obtain a patient’s meal selection.  We place a high priority in making sure our patients are given the opportunity to select their meals daily.  Satisfaction is extremely important.  You will not find:

·         A menu without choices and options as the patient selects their favorite meal option
·         Ignoring food allergens; we focus on allergy tracking for patient safety
·         Meals leaving the kitchen without being checked by a Supervisor
·         Patients being served items that are inconsistent with their diet orders
·         Plain or bland foods as each of our dishes are made with herbs and spices that complement the foods prepared
·         Caged eggs, fish that is not sustainable, milk or dairy from animals treated with growth hormones  

6.   How long has this change taken place?
When did things really start turning around? We have been offering the Great Living menu at Norton Healthcare for over a year.  Norton’s commitment to wellness and health promotion aligns with Morrison’s Mindful Choices® platform.  Together, we are offering healthy, flavorful meals, a positive dining experience, and influencing the behavioral change in our community