Access to WIC benefits typically requires an in-person visit to a WIC center, however this became a challenge during the COVID-19 pandemic due to recommendations for social distancing to minimize and prevent the spread of the virus. As a result, in-person requirements were removed for all visits, except first time enrollment visits, and participants were able to renew their benefits and have nutrition consultations virtually. This reduced the risk of exposure in WIC offices and public transport, and also eliminated logistical challenges associated with in-person visits. This brief presents findings from a rapid-response study examining patient satisfaction and preferences with regard to virtual WIC visits in New York City during the period from July 2020 to October 2020. The study aimed to weigh the pros and cons of phone visits by examining missed appointments, acceptability, and preferences. It found that the “no-show” rate was reduced by 45% during this time, phone appointments were highly rated, and nearly three quarters of participants surveyed preferred virtual visits.
Acceptability, Preference, and No‑Show Rates for In‑Person and Phone‑Based Consultations at Nine WIC Centers in New York City Before and During COVID‑19
The USDA Online Purchasing Pilot, which allows SNAP participants to shop and pay for groceries online, rapidly expanded during the COVID-19 pandemic. From March 2020 to March 2021, the number of participating states increased from 5 to 47. This brief assesses whether the Pilot promotes healthy food access (using the … More
The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) is the largest United States Department of Agriculture federal nutrition assistance program. As an entitlement program, SNAP is designed to expand as incomes fall, enabling the program to respond quickly when need increases. For example, prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, SNAP served an average … More
Promoting Responsive Bottle-Feeding Within WIC: Evaluation of a Policy, Systems, and Environmental Change Approach
Bottle-fed infants are at greater risk for overfeeding and rapid weight gain (RWG), so evidence-based strategies for promoting healthy bottle-feeding practices are needed. The aim of this study was to assess whether policy, systems, and environmental (PSE) strategies for promoting responsive bottle-feeding practices within the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for … More