INDIANAPOLIS – Indiana health officials announced today that Women, Infants and Children programs in all 92 counties are now using electronic benefit transfer (EBT) cards instead of paper checks, streamlining the WIC shopping experience.
The statewide rollout, which began in Johnson County in February, allows WIC participants anywhere in Indiana to shop for groceries by swiping a new EBT card and entering a personal identification number (PIN). The new card makes shopping for nutritious groceries simpler and less time-consuming for the nearly 50 percent of new mothers across Indiana who participate in the WIC program.
“WIC is a tremendous resource to pregnant women, new mothers, infants and children up to age 5, and healthy nutrition plays a vital role in the fight to reduce Indiana’s infant mortality rate,” said Indiana WIC Director Eldon Whetstone. “Women who meet income guidelines are eligible for WIC benefits as soon as they become pregnant, and the EBT card makes utilizing WIC benefits more convenient than ever.”
Indiana WIC provides healthy food, including fruits and vegetables, from more than 650 grocery stores throughout Indiana to eligible Hoosiers each month. The EBT cards provide convenience and ease of use to not only WIC clients, but stores as well. Participants no longer have to use paper checks, and the cards allow them to buy approved items as needed instead of all at once.
More than 150,000 WIC clients are now using EBT cards, and all clients will be converted by the end of the year as current paper checks expire.