Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

A new QR code at Cincinnati Children's locations makes signing up for WIC easier

Mother and baby spending time shopping in supermarket
A federal grant is paying for development of a QR code that will help mothers determine if they are eligible for WIC and get the paperwork started.

Nutrition is a key piece of development for kids and that's why the University of Cincinnati and Cincinnati Children's are teaming up to make the process of signing up for WIC easier.

They got a federal grant and are developing a QR code for caregivers to determine eligibility and get the process started.

"We're piloting it using the six primary care clinics at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center," says pediatrician Chidogo Anyigbo. "We're going to develop the QR codes and then work with WIC 'championers' who will support the staff and be able to help families access it."

Anyigbo says fewer than 50% of eligible Ohioans do not participate in WIC, also known as Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children. She says the signup is complicated and there are language barriers.

LISTEN: Senior SNAP recipients now have access to fresh, low-cost produce

UC and Children's will eventually translate the program into three other languages.

Cathy Stough directs UC's Healthy Bearcat Families Lab and is an assistant professor of psychology. She says the goal is to expand the QR code to as many clinics as possible.

"We're actually going to develop a sort of standard operating procedure manual of how we do this, so that if another clinic is interested, we don't even have to go through lots of long meetings to teach you how we did it," she says. "We can say, 'Here's the process we did. This is what you could use in your clinic.' "

Here are the participating clinics:

Ann Thompson has decades of journalism experience in the Greater Cincinnati market and brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to her reporting.