Program Implementation for WIC
With more than sixteen million children living in homes with little or no food each day, the American Academy of Pediatrics estimates that up to 90% of toddlers’ risk having poor health and the remaining 30% were hospitalized (Oliveira, Racine, Olmsted and Ghelfi, 2002). To combat the issue of food insecurity, the government, through the Department of Agriculture, rolled out a supplemental program to aid families with young children facing hunger and malnutrition. Established in 1972, the Women, Infants and Children program provides food supplements for low-income pregnant women, children below the age of 5. Some of the main benefits for the participants include nutritional education, monthly packages of supplemental foods as well as counselling and referrals to health and social services. Since its inception, the program has served more than 5.
The number of participants is dependent on the annual appropriation and costs of running the program. Data collection was done using internet resources and clinical statistics submitted by the program director. Eligible persons were required to meet certain criteria based on income limit per household and nutritional risk status. Some of the people considered in this category include pregnant women, postpartum breastfeeding mothers and children below the age of five. A total of 3695 participants between the ages between 15 to 40 met the eligibility requirement (Scholz, 2003). Most of the states have also adopted paper vouchers that list the types and quantities of food that is purchasable using the voucher. The decision by state agencies to us voucher costs, therefore, serves as a proxy to determine when vendors charge exorbitant prices.
Other than determining the actual voucher costs, the information on partial voucher redemption is also vital for other reasons relating to the program. For instance, it may allude to the fact that the latter is providing too much of certain food types or that some participants are consuming less food than that which is authorized. It could also be indicative of problems faced by clients during transactions, limited variety or the unavailability of foods in some stores, or that the participants are having a problem identifying WIC in authorized packages. The decision to provide low-income households with free formula helped in reducing the wholesale prices of the product. Additionally, there has been a significant increase in infants who are either partially or breastfeeding especially after the implementation of the revised food packages.
Health Statistics Statistics reports from the WIC program indicate that 680 expectant women had a body mass index of less than 24. 9 before they were pregnancy compared to the total 11000 in all WIC clinics in the country. This indicates a significant decrease in obesity rates compared to the earlier years. Further, examining the different systems that the government has put in place through the program is reassuring of the intention to provide the best care for families. Perhaps, the existing policies should be continuously updated to ensure that it caters to the future generation. The reduction in child mortality rate is proof that the program has achieved its purpose of providing the necessary ingredients required to deliver healthy children and also reducing the need for Medicaid later on in life.
Similarly, the increase in enrolment of pregnant women and their continued involvement all through their six months of post-partum will help in improving their health and also have a positive influence on their future births. Women still face a lot of health issues that expose them to maternal risk factors, hence the need for WIC to modify and enhance its services to address the emerging problems effectively. The existence of diversity also means that service delivery has to be done with cultural consciousness and in a confidential manner to avoid causing stigma to the target population. The WIC manual indicates that the policies and procedures have been laid out in such a way to ensure that proper care and value is accorded to persons who need it.
It is therefore crucial that the best interest of the persons is taken care of by those who oppose the program because of the benefits associated with it. Besides, the persons involved with the implementation should continue exploring innovative service delivery models that will ensure safe, comfortable and efficient delivery of the programs in future. Community outreach initiatives could also play a vital role in interacting with potential members and forging beneficial partnerships that will increase involvement in the WIC program. Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, 11(4), 573 Joyce, T. , Racine, A. , & Yunzal-Butler, C. Reassessing the WIC effect: Evidence from the Pregnancy Nutrition Surveillance System. Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, 27(2), 277-303. United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service. Scholz, J.
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