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Texas Emergency Hospital cafeteria provides Cleveland with healthy alternative

January 8, 2019

Texas Emergency Hospital in Cleveland opened its doors on July 5, 2017 with the thought of helping the community.

So, on Oct. 29, 2018 the hospital opened its cafeteria to the public to provide a healthy alternative for breakfast and lunch to Cleveland residents.

“We learned that the cafeteria was a gathering place for the community,” said Texas Emergency Hospital Chief Operations Officer Pattie Foster. “People would come to have some coffee and a donut from time to time. We wanted to provide a place where people in the community could come and have a nice meal. We didn’t want people to have to go to a fast food restaurant or another restaurant while they were at the hospital. We wanted people to not go far and enjoy a meal here.”

The community has responded well to the cafeteria and has shown support.

The hospital has food options for its patients and the patients at Cleveland Emergency hospital breakfast, lunch and dinner 365 days a year. The employees are fed as well and receive a discounted price for a healthier option to eat.

The cafeteria is open to the public from Monday through Friday. Breakfast is served from 7-9:30 a.m. and lunch is served from 11 a.m.-2 p.m.

“We have received nothing but great compliments from the community,” said the 58-year-old Foster. “We have had some city members coming in and have a bite to eat. You know sometimes people just want a salad every now and then, and they will come in as well.”

Food Management Group is contracted to run the green kitchen that provides a healthy meal.

Breakfast is popular and one dish that stands out is the omelet, Foster said.

Mary Martinez, who recently retired, is back working at the hospital as a call-in nurse.

Having a healthy meal in the cafeteria is just what she wants at lunch time.

“It’s very healthy,” said the 76-year-old Martinez, as she cut open her baked potato. “Everything they make here in the cafeteria is fresh. A lot of people have been coming here for lunch like police officers and other workers. What they’re going to do is bring more people and they will let others know. It’s a work in progress, but we’re happy with what they’re doing her with serving the food.”

Mary Richeson runs the day-to-day operations for the cafeteria and has enjoyed the hospitality from the citizens of Cleveland.

“Serving a good meal is always important,” said the 52-year-old Fort Worth native. “We really listen to the people on what they want to eat and what we can improve on. We want to know more about how we’re doing. A green kitchen allows us to server healthy options every day. There’s nothing frozen here that you just warmup here. Everything is made fresh each day.”

The cafeteria also has hosted the Lions Club, the Greater Cleveland Chamber of Commerce luncheon and has hosted Chamber meetings as well.

Foster wants to continue to see more of the community come to the cafeteria

“We have had soft openings to invite people in, and they have come,” Foster said. “We have done a great job getting out to the community and letting people know that we’re open for breakfast and lunch. We’re the hometown healthcare and we want to make sure the community knows that every day.”

marcus.gutierrez@chron.com

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