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Missoula City-County Health Department
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Missoula County Health Services

Health Division: Health Services
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Health Services: Benefits of WIC

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Participation in WIC can improve:

The results of studies conducted by Food Nutrition Services (FNS) and other non-government entities have shown that the WIC program is one of the nation's most successful and cost-effective nutrition intervention programs.

WIC participants receive nutritious foods, nutrition education and information about health and social services. Since its beginning in 1974, the WIC program has earned the reputation of being one of the most successful federally-funded nutrition programs in the United States.

WIC saves lives
and improves the health of nutritionally at-risk
women, infants and children.

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Improved birth outcomes and savings in health care costs

Research shows that WIC plays an important role in improving birth outcomes and containing health care costs. Missoula families who enroll in WIC demonstrate:


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Improved diet and diet-related outcomes

Studies have found WIC to have a positive effect on children's diet and nutrition:


Breastfeeding Infant

Improved infant feeding practices

WIC promotes breastfeeding as the optimal method of infant feeding. Studies show:



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Improved immunization rates and regular source of medical care

A regular schedule of immunizations is prescribed for children from birth to 2 years of age, which coincides with the period in which many low-income children participate in WIC.

Childhood immunizations


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Improved cognitive development

Cognitive development influences school achievement and behavior. Participation in the WIC Program has been shown to:


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Improved pre-conception nutritional status

Preconception nutritional status is an important determinant of birth outcome. A previous pregnancy can cause nutritional depletion of the postpartum women, particularly those with high parity and short inter-pregnancy intervals.

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Other improved outcomes

WIC participation has been shown to:

Note: Information and Statistics were taken from the FNS website and Missoula County records.

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WIC Resources

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