Agreement Will Extend Supplemental Foods, Nutrition Education Program Through 2015
St. Charles County, Missouri – The St. Charles County Department of Community Health and the Environment has renewed its contract with the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services to continue operating the popular Women, Infants and Children program (WIC) in 2015. With approximately 2,000 clients participating each month in St. Charles County, WIC provides specific nutritious supplemental foods and nutrition education at no cost to qualifying pregnant or breastfeeding women, postpartum women, infants and children up to age five.
“Participating in the WIC program starts growing families on their paths to better health,” St. Charles County WIC Manager Eva Obirek said. “Studies confirm that women who participate in this program have fewer low birth weight babies, experience fewer infant deaths, see the doctor earlier in pregnancy and eat healthier. And, since the program tailors its food packages offered based upon the stages of development, families can receive the right combination of vitamins, minerals and other nutrients to meet the specific needs of each individual.”
The primary WIC services are health screening, risk assessment, nutrition education and counseling, breastfeeding promotion and referrals to additional health care. By participating, eligible families will receive a “food prescription” with nutritious food items selected for enhancing proper development. To optimize the health of all WIC participants, the department maintains an environment that supports and encourages women to initiate and continue breastfeeding — which has been shown to be the ideal food source for babies, providing all the essential nutrients and sufficient calories to meet an infant’s needs.
Participants in WIC must meet income guidelines, a residency requirement and be individually determined to be at “nutritional risk” by a health professional. The income guideline schedule is available online at http://health.mo.gov/living/families/wic/eligibility_income.php. For these guidelines, pregnant women are counted as two family members when eligibility is determined.
St. Charles County’s WIC program is based at the Division of Public Health office (1650 Boone’s Lick Road in St. Charles). WIC services are provided, by scheduled appointment, from 8:30 a.m. to noon or 1 to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday — except holidays. Persons interested in applying for WIC or in need of more information should call (636) 949-7402 during business hours.
In accordance with federal law and U.S. Department of Agriculture policy, the St. Charles County Department of Community Health and the Environment is prohibited from discriminating on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, or disability. To file a complaint of discrimination, write to USDA, Director, Office of Adjudication, 1400 Independence Avenue SW, Washington DC, 20250-9410 or call (866) 632-9992 (voice) or (800) 877-8339 (TTY). USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.
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