First need in the reform of hospital management? That's easy ! The death of all dietitians, and the resurrection of a French Chef - Martin H. Fischer
Perhaps not as bad as: "a river of liver and an ocean of fish!", but Hospital Food has a reputation second only to military food as being less than palatable. I remember when I was a kid I visited my Dad at Genesee Hospital while he was eating. It looked like what's to the right.
I '76 my big brother had knee surgery. He was dying from the food. I borrowed the Father Mulcahey outfit from when we were both in MASH, stuffed a black bag from the same with a Whopper, Fries and and a shake.
Now I have respect for anyone who toils in a kitchen, but when it comes to institutional cookery those who work in Hospitals and Nursing Homes occupy the bottom rung (yes, even below lunch ladies). It's not their fault - it's the nature of the beast itself.
My first experience with Hospital food was in 1994 and consisted of blue stuff running through a tube down my nose. When I was back on solid food, I'd circle my choices on a sheet of paper. It would get delivered - usually when I was at respiratory therapy.
My first meal was a revelation. I was still in the ER, waiting for a room. So they fed me. Burger, Home Fries, Peas, Peaches, Jello, Coffee and Milk. All cold. Shame about the coffee - it would be the last caffeinated beverage until yesterday. Still, I give them a pass. How the hell does one prepare for an ER patient being hungry.
There were innovations. Instead of the check sheet, you now get a menu and can order when you are ready (in fact they call if you haven't). I stuck to cold food for the most part - it's just too difficult to keep food warm. I stuck to cereal for Breakfast. Tuesday's dinner was a quite passable tuna sandwich, lettuce and tomato on the side as ordered.
Wednesday not so well. Egg Salad ≠ Pot Roast. It became apparent that even though they might get it right the first time, redo's were a mess. What showed up was a miserly schmear of Egg Salad on torn bread, with no additions.
Thursday was the best meal I had. Trish brought me Pad Thai and Tom Yum Goong from Saigon Bangkok. Friday she made me Chicken Soup With Matzoh Balls - Yummy.
The most bizarre meal was Friday's Lunch. I ordered a Roast Beef Sandwich with L,T and O and a side of fries. The tray arrived with only fries - cold ones at that. I called down with the "where's the beef?" question. What showed up was s sorry excuse for a sandwich, no L or T and the O looked like they were around for a week.
As a fitting dénoument, I ordered a banana with breakfast yesterday. It should be ripe by next weekend.
The bottom line: they've made some improvements, but there's no place like home.