What You Need To Know
The Women, Infants, and Children Program have been specially set up to cater to the nutritional needs of these categories. It is a special supplemental food program. This means that it aims to safeguard the health of those women, infants, and children who are at nutritional risk. The children must be below the age of 5. WIC provides various benefits to its qualified individuals. Amongst these, there is:
- Nutritious food,
- Breastfeeding support
- Information on healthy eating
- Referrals to health care.
All these services are provided to pregnant, postpartum and breastfeeding women. Along with these, infants and children under 5 are also eligible. The information distributed by this program includes other health care data as well. It highlights where these people should apply for free or low-cost health care and other needed services. Administration of the New York WIC has been carried out by the New York Department of Health.
To avail the services of WIC, you will receive:
- WIC food checks
- A WIC Acceptable Foods booklet
- A WIC ID Card
- WIC Participant Rights and Responsibilities
If the caregiver is unable to bring their child to WIC appointments, they can authorize someone else to do so. However, it is important to make sure that the entrusted person is reliable.
Are You Eligible
The requirements for this program range from basic needs to more specific criteria. It has been listed below as:
- You must be a resident of the state of New York
- You must be pregnant, breastfeeding and/or postpartum woman; or
- You must be an infant or child below the age of five.
- You must be at nutrition risk according to the knowledge of a health professional.
The program has been set up for mainly those people whose financial situation disables them from receiving such services. Therefore, the annual household income, before any tax deductions, is expected to be less than or equal to the following:
|Size Of The Household||Maximum Annual Income Level ($)|
In certain cases, the household has more than eight people. An additional amount of $8,177 must be added per person if this is the situation. It is vital to keep in contact with the managing area of your county. This will prove helpful as it will keep you updated about the guidelines and their accuracy.
A WIC pre-screening tool is available to check the eligibility of a person. It can be used to find out the potential of the person in qualifying for the program. It is not the final application and should not be treated as one.
How To Apply
An eligible individual can start his or her application process through the help of the closest WIC office. An appointment can be set up with them that help the person to gain guidance and assistance concerning it. This would allow the person to go through the procedure more easily. It would also lead to the chance of acceptance.
There are certain documents required to complete your application. These must be taken by the person when they visit their local agency. Amongst these documents, there must be proof of:
- Income for everyone in the household
- Your identity
- Your place of residence
- How you are one of the people served by the WIC.
There are other additional health forms also required which must be present with you. This will also lead to the quickening of the process. Once the forms and documents have been reviewed, the WIC staff will conduct a health screening. This would be required from all the family members that wish to be a part of WIC. The short health screening will include:
- Finger stick blood test
- Height and weight
- A discussion of your health and nutrition concerns.
Such information will also help the WIC staff to choose the most suitable packages for you and your children. In case a mother chooses not to breastfeed, the WIC will even provide the appropriate formulas from their approved list. If you or anyone in your family has special nutritional needs, they’ll be recorded through a WIC Medical Documentation Form.
For Further Information?
The New York Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children has a website. This online page can be referred to in case of any confusion a person may have. The NY WIC has also set up a hotline to cater to the needs of people. The Growing Up Healthy Hotline will assist you in locating the nearest WIC agency as well.