Women, Infants and Children (WIC)
WIC in St. Lucie County
WIC Program Overview
The Women, Infants and Children (WIC) Nutrition Program is a premier public health nutrition program designed to improve the health of pregnant, breastfeeding and postpartum women, infants and children up to age 5 through nutrition counseling and nutritious foods.
Families are screened for income and nutritional risk eligibility. Income guidelines are set at or below 185% of federal poverty level with a sliding scale for income based on the number in a household. Licensed Nutritionists and Nutrition Educators determine nutritional risk eligibility and provide nutrition assessment, counseling and education to assist families in making healthier nutrition, physical activity and lifestyle choices.
WIC Provides Nutritious Foods and Breastfeeding Support
The WIC Program provides vouchers for nutritious foods including milk, juice, cereal, cheese, yogurt, eggs, peanut butter, beans, fruits, vegetables, whole grains and baby foods purchased at authorized stores. The specific nutrient-dense foods assure adequate protein, iron, calcium, vitamins and minerals are selected for increased demands of growth and development.
Clients purchase the foods at WIC authorized retailers using a WIC FL-Wise EBT card. The food package tailored for the individual client is loaded onto the EBT card at the WIC office during certification and nutrition education follow up appointments.
Breastfeeding is recognized as the best bonding and nutritional choice for mothers and infants. WIC's Circle of Care for nursing mothers offers a Breastfeeding Peer Counselor program and the expertise of a Lactation Consultant to encourage and support mothers in their decision to breastfeed. Manual breast pumps or an electric breast pump loan program are available as needed by mothers enrolled in WIC.For those mothers unable to breastfeed or choosing not to breastfeed, FDA-approved artificial baby milk is provided for the baby's first year. The Florida WIC Program contracts with a single manufacturer for rebate savings on each can to control costs and serve more families
WIC Improves Health Outcomes
Studies document the following proven benefits of WIC Participation:
- Lowers infant mortality
- Improves nutritious food intake and weight gain in pregnant women
- Decreases low birth weight
- Reduces anemia in children
- Significantly improves children's diets with increased nutrient levels
- Preschoolers participating in WIC made healthier snack choices than their peers
- 4 and 5 year olds who participated in WIC had better vocabularies and digit memory scores than their peers who did not participate in WIC
- Leads to higher rates of immunization against childhood diseases
- Every dollar invested prenatally in WIC saved $1.77 in Medicaid costs through the first 60 days after birth
- $3.50 is saved for each dollar spent on WIC prenatally. This savings reduces the cost of hospitalization, special education, and supplemental income for disabled children, with most of the savings in the first year of life.
- Improves access to regular healthcare
WIC is an investment program that saves healthcare dollars through primary prevention and nutrition intervention.
If you think that your family or someone you know may qualify for WIC services, please call for an appointment today! WIC is an equal opportunity provider. Refer to WIC Office Locations in St. Lucie County.
The WIC Prescreening Tool is a web-based application intended to help potential WIC applicants determine if they are likely to be eligible for WIC benefits. Based on your responses to these questions, users are informed that you "may be eligible" or "may not be eligible" for WIC benefits. You will need to contact the local WIC office for an appointment to apply and bring required documentation. See our office locations and call for an appointment today!.
The WIC Prescreening Tool is accessible at WIC Prescreening Tool. The Tool is currently available in English, Spanish and Chinese (traditional). More languages are expected to be added in the near future.
For further information on the WIC Program please access the Florida Department of Health, Bureau of WIC Program Services via the internet site, www.FloridaWIC.org.