Published: October 2020

ID #: CAS055

Journal: JMIR Mhealth Uhealth

Authors: Zhang Q, Zhang J, Park K, Tang C

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This study aims to examine the relationship between the use of a widely used mobile phone app, WICShopper, and the redemption of the prescribed food packages. WIC administrative data were obtained from West Virginia for the period January 2019 to January 2020 and included 30,440 WIC households that had received food benefits in that period. The redemption rates of 18 WIC food benefits were compared between app users and nonapp users, that is, those who never used the app in the study period. App users consistently had higher average redemption rates than nonapp users; the difference ranged from 3.6% (4.8% relative) for infant formula to 14.3% (40.7% relative) for fish. More active days were positively related to benefit redemptions across food categories, and the app’s daytime use was positively associated with the redemption of most benefit categories. These findings suggest that the WIC app can be an important tool for the promotion of benefit redemption among WIC participants.

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