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McDonough County Health Department
Community Health Division

Women, Infants, and Children (WIC)


To safeguard the health of low-income women, infants, and children up to age 5 who are at nutritional risk by providing nutritious foods to supplement diets, information on healthy eating, and referrals to health care.

What is WIC?

WIC is a supplemental program that provides nutritious foods, nutrition counseling, and referrals to health and other social services to participants at no charge. WIC serves low-income pregnant, postpartum and breastfeeding women, and infants and children up to age 5 who are at nutrition risk. WIC is not an entitlement program through which Congress sets aside funds to allow every eligible individual to participate in the program. It is a federal grant program. The grant monies are dispersed to the various sites nationwide that participate in the WIC program.

How WIC helps:

WIC reduces fetal deaths and infant mortality, reduces low birth weight rates and increases the duration of pregnancy, improves the growth of nutritionally at-risk infants and children, decreases the incidence of iron deficiency anemia in children, improves the dietary intake of pregnant and postpartum women and improves weight gain in pregnant women. Pregnant women participating in WIC receive prenatal care earlier. Children enrolled in the program are more likely to have a regular source of medical care and have up to date immunizations. It also improves children’s diets as well as their cognitive development.

Medical Nutritional Prescription Form (Updated October 3, 2013)