Friday, November 4, 2011

Colorado WIC Program Develops Compass System to Manage Statewide WIC Efforts

Since 2005, the Colorado Women, Infants & Children (WIC) program has served as the lead agency for a multi-state consortium charged by USDA with developing a model Management Information Systems for use by other state WIC Programs. The Colorado version of the web based system, known as Compass, began pilot testing in early 2011 and rolling out to all local agencies in the spring of 2011. The system is now fully operational and supports 450 clinic staff in 100 clinics across the state of Colorado. These clinics provide $23 million of benefits to more than 100,000 women, infants and children through the issuance of $65 million food instruments each year.

The new system features high-tech functionality to enhance the WIC staff and participant experience during a WIC appointment. New features include:

  • Near paperless operation
  • Internet access for all local agency staff
  • Immediate participant transfer to and from Colorado clinics
  • Electronic growth grids
  • Greater access to agency data

Sandy Recla, Fort Collins WIC Clinic Manager said, “The growth grids are great. Parents seem to understand them better and it has been easier to get the parents to think about goals and commit to them.” She also listed scheduling appointments, the ability to assign a second endorser, and easy voucher printing as noticeable improvements from the current system.

With Compass rolled out across the state, the Colorado WIC Program is now working with other state WIC agencies to share information, best practices and lessons learned about the system for replication and implementation.

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