Magazine article Nutrition Health Review

Fast-Food Shops in Hospitals

Magazine article Nutrition Health Review

Fast-Food Shops in Hospitals

Article excerpt

Fast-Food Shops in Hospitals

Hospitals are beginning to permit fast-food restaurant chains to operate on their premises. The establishment of such food vendors in a health care setting raises a question: Should any institution that is responsible for community welfare encourage practices that are now known to be inimical to public health?

It is a perplexing contradiction. On one floor of the hospital physicians struggle to keep alive a victim of cardiovascular disease, on another, a restaurant serves food that contributes to it. Three fast-food chains, at least, have begun setting up shops in hospitals around the country.

This development is ironic in view of the Surgeon General's recent report that identified animal fat as a leading contributor to disease, and warns that overconsumption of fats, sugar, and salt constitutes a major health problem for the nation.

"Of greatest concern," Surgeon General C. Everett Koop, M.D., has warned, "is our excessive intake of dietary fat and its relationship to risk for chronic diseases, some types of cancers, diabetes, high blood pressure, strokes, and obesity."

Physician and public opposition has ranged from mild irritation to something close to outrage. …

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