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Updated guidelines make more people eligible for WIC

Staff report • Aug 11, 2018 at 4:30 PM

WISE — The Lenowisco Health District, covering Lee, Wise and Scott counties and the city of Norton, advises that new income guidelines for the special supplemental nutrition program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) now makes WIC available for more people.

Starting July 1, the maximum income for Virginia WIC participants is 185 percent of the poverty level as established by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. A family of four can now earn up to $893 per week or $46,435 per year and still qualify for WIC.

If you qualify for Medicaid or the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), you also will qualify for WIC. Lenowisco reports many families with incomes too high to qualify for Medicaid or SNAP may still qualify for WIC. Children might qualify even if the mother does not. Foster or adopting families might also qualify.

“If you think you qualify, please contact your local WIC office,” said Karen Baker, WIC coordinator for Lenowisco. “WIC foods are high in nutrients like vitamin C, calcium, iron and protein. The prevention of many health problems starts with eating these types of nutrients, especially for infants and children.”

New maximum income guidelines effective to June 30, 2019 for a single-person household is $1,872 per month or $22,459 per year; for a two-person household, $2,538 a month or $30,451 per year; for a three-person household, $3,204 per month or $38,443 per year; and the four-person household as stated above.

“WIC promotes healthy moms and children,” said Lenowisco Health District Director Dr. Eleanor Cantrell. “It also provides health screenings, nutrition education and support for breastfeeding mothers and referrals to other community resources.”

WIC provides pregnant, breastfeeding and recently postpartum women and infants and children up to age 5 with nutritious foods such as milk, eggs, wheat bread, cheese, cereal, baby formula and baby foods, as well as fruits and vegetables.

For more information about WIC, contact your local health department office. In Lee County, call (276) 346-4386; Scott County, (276) 386-8008; Wise County and Norton, (276) 328-1906, or visit www.wicva.com and Facebook.com/Lenowisco.

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