Supplemental Food Program:

Using Cost Saving Methods Could Increase Participation

RCED-88-35BR: Published: Oct 9, 1987. Publicly Released: Oct 27, 1987.

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In response to a congressional request, GAO estimated the number of additional participants states could add to the Special Supplemental Food Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) if they purchased infant formula at less than retail cost.

GAO estimated that: (1) nationwide, states could serve 221,400 to 630,200 additional eligible WIC participants with savings achieved if they purchased formula at the reduced rates that six states already use; and (2) if states used 10 to 20 percent of the savings to cover administrative costs, they could add from 177,100 to 567,700 participants, respectively. GAO noted that Congress is considering legislation to allow states to use these savings to cover increases in administrative costs.

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