Infant Formula Shortage

Georgia Department of Public Health is aware that formula supply is an evolving situation for Georgia families. We are closely monitoring supplies, and working with the federal government, manufacturers, and authorized WIC retailers. Our goal is to ensure safe and nutritious options for Georgia families.

Many families have other safe options for their infants even if their usual formula is not in stock. We encourage families to ask their child’s health care provider about safe nutrition options for their baby if they are having difficulty finding their usual formula, particularly for babies who need specialized formula.

Important reminders/Things to know:

  • If you can’t find formula or can’t find your baby’s typical formula, work with your child’s health care provider to determine the best feeding plan.
  • Do NOT water down your baby’s formula to stretch it out, it can be extremely dangerous to your baby to do so.
  • Do NOT make homemade formula.
  • Do NOT buy formula from online auctions, unknown individuals, or unknown origins. Storage and shipping conditions may impact formula safety.
  • Women who are pregnant are encouraged to consult with a health care provider about breastfeeding.
  • All women that are medically able, should be strongly encouraged to breastfeed.
  • Families using a combination feeding of breast milk and iron-fortified infant formula may wish to consider increasing the frequency of breastfeeding or pumping if possible so that they do not need as much formula.
  • WIC-eligible families have access to an expert with clinical experience or training in helping breastfeeding mothers who provide breastfeeding expertise and care for more complex breastfeeding problems when WIC staff face situations outside of their scope of practice

Additional Formula Options for WIC Participants:

State WIC agencies have submitted requests to the US Department of Agriculture for additional WIC flexibilities in response to the supply chain impact of the ongoing COVID-19 Pandemic and 2022 Abbott Recall on Nationwide Infant Formula. Georgia WIC requested and has received approvals for the following waivers:

  • Maximum Monthly Allowance: This allows participants to receive alternate container sizes including those that are bigger and different forms, like ready to feed.
  • Medical Documentation: Allows participants to receive non-contract brand infant formulas without medical documentation.  This waiver does not apply to infants and children on special formulas.  Medical documentation is still needed for special formulas like Alimentum and Nutramigen.
  • Vendor Exchanges: WIC participants have the same rights as all other customers under this recall and allows WIC retailers to exchange recalled formula purchased with WIC benefits at the store.

As a result of these waivers, Georgia WIC has expanded the available contract formulas to include additional package sizes and the Enfamil NeuroPro brand.  In addition, participants now have access to a variety of store-brand infant formulas.  Store-brand special formulas have also been approved for issuance.  For Georgia WIC, this means if families are unable to find their contract standard cow’s milk, soy, or lactose reduced formulas (Enfamil Infant, ProSobee, or Gentlease), they may request vouchers for other non-contract and store-brands that are available.

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Additional Formula Options for WIC Participants

 

Page updated 6/13/22