Coronavirus WIC Update
WIC is still helping clients during this pandemic. Clinics are doing their best to serve clients remotely. Please call your clinic before coming in to see what adjustments they are making. You probably won’t need to come to the clinic in person. Most appointments can be completed over the phone and checks can be mailed. If your clinic is still allowing in-person appointments, please make sure all family members are feeling well and you have not been exposed to COVID-19.
We are aware that several food items including WIC foods and formula have been in short supply at local grocery stores. We are seeing major improvements recently. Our corporate partners have assured us that manufacturers and wholesalers have adequate supply that they are shipping to stores as quickly as possible. If you need help finding an item, speak with a store manager. While some stores may be out of certain items, other nearby stores could have the items in stock. You may need to shop around if you are in urgent need of a certain item. The image below explains allowable food substitutions that are approved for purchase until May 31, 2020.
Here are some tips to help find what you need:
- Make a shopping list ahead of time.
- Go shopping EARLY. Stores are restocking every night.
- For specialty items, CALL AHEAD.
- Ask to speak with a manager and ask them to hold the item(s) for you.
- It is only reasonable to ask them to hold item(s) for a short period of time. Please do not ask them to hold items overnight.
- Write down the name of the person you speak with and ask for that same person when you get to the store to pick up your item(s).
- If the formula you are looking for is out of stock on the usual shelf, check with the customer service desk to see if they happen to have any behind the desk. Some stores are keeping a reserve of formula specifically for WIC clients. Remember, no substitutions of infant formula are allowed.
Some stores are enforcing limits on food products. This is allowable, but please let store staff know that you plan to use WIC checks and ask that you be allowed to purchase the number of items that you have on at least one WIC check. Please be patient if you are not able to use all your checks in one shopping trip. Your clinic can adjust your checks if needed so that you have more checks with fewer items on each. We hope store shortages will end soon.
We know these are difficult times. State and local WIC staff are working hard to find ways to serve you better during this pandemic. We appreciate your participation in WIC. Please keep yourselves and your family members safe and enjoy extra time together.
GUIDELINES FOR SUBMITTING DOCUMENTS ELECTRONICALLY
If your clinic asks you to send them documentation for your appointment, the following guidelines will help protect your personal information as much as possible. There is always a risk when personal identifying information is shared online. If you have concerns, speak with the clinic staff. You may have the option to mail in copies of your documents. Consider the following tips:
- Use secure or encrypted email if possible. Clinic staff may be able to start an encrypted email thread with you.
- Use a live video app to show your proofs to the clinic staff rather than sending them online.
- When submitting documents through a less secure method (standard email, text, etc.) avoid sending birth certificates; it is recommended to obscure Driver License numbers with a piece of tape, etc.; NEVER submit a document with a visible Social Security Number.
- Flexibility will be allowed to accept other documents containing the name and date of birth of the applicant/participant as a form of ID.