Families grow healthy with WIC
To the Editor,
This is not just WIC’s motto, it is backed by research. Recent studies highlight how participation in the WIC Program is associated with healthier outcomes and cost savings.
The 2009 changes to the WIC Food Package, which added more fruits, vegetables and whole grains and tailored infant formula amounts based on age and need, have resulted in healthier growth trajectories and are associated with improved childhood obesity outcomes at age 4. These findings were consistent in three recent studies, one of over 180,000 children served by WIC in Los Angeles and two others comparing childhood obesity rates nationwide. Not surprisingly, the beneficial health effects were greatest among children who enrolled in WIC at birth.
In addition, a recent study demonstrated that prenatal participation in WIC reduces the risk of adverse health outcomes, including prematurity and results in health care savings. The study found that every $1 spent on WIC resulted in a mean saving of $2.48 in medical, educational and productivity costs. A 10 percent increase in prenatal WIC enrollment would prevent 141 preterm births and achieve additional cost-savings of $6.5 million nationwide. Further savings could be achieved if all eligible women were enrolled in WIC.
WIC offers nutrition education, breastfeeding counseling and support and nutritious foods to prenatal and post-partum women, infants and children up to age 5. Families earning up to 185 percent of the Federal Poverty Level meet WIC income eligibility and those receiving Medi-Cal, TANF and/or Cal-Fresh automatically qualify. For information about WIC and WIC services: 722-7121 or cdph.ca.gov/Programs/CFH/DWICSN/Pages/AboutWIC.aspx.
Join the Community Bridges WIC Program Aug. 23 from 3-6 p.m. at the Watsonville City Plaza for our 13th annual Breastfeeding Health Fair and Walk. Learn more about WIC services and help support our mission to provide every eligible family with the healthiest start in life.
To the Editor,
Mr. Panetta: If you really represent Watsonville, WHY have you not endorsed impeachment?
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