Important Facts for Low hemoglobin levels in WIC women participants
DefinitionDefinitions used in this Indicator Report follow the current USDA (United States Department of Agriculture), WIC (Women, Infants, and Children) program definitions which are as follows: '''Low Hemoglobin Levels''': Hemoglobin concentration below the 95 percent confidence interval (i.e. below the .025 percentile) for healthy, well-nourished individuals of the same age, sex, and stage of pregnancy.
Numerator__2010-Current:__ The number of pregnant, breastfeeding, and postpartum women receiving WIC services who had '''low hemoglobin levels''' (see definition).
Denominator__2010-Current:__ The number of pregnant, breastfeeding, and postpartum women receiving WIC services.
Data Interpretation IssuesBeginning in 2010, national data are from USDA's WIC Program and Participant Characteristic Survey, which is released every 2 years. Utah data, beginning in 2011, are from the WIC computer system VISION, created by Ciber. From 2020-2022, the COVID-19 pandemic caused FNS to provide WIC clinics waivers for in-person visits, making accurate data collection for hemoglobin levels difficult. This may have contributed to the fluctuation in low hemoglobin prevalence during these years.
Why Is This Important?Hemoglobin is an iron-rich protein in red blood cells that carries oxygen throughout the body. A low hemoglobin level is an indicator of a health condition called anemia. Anemia occurs when there are lower amounts of red blood cells in the body. It can be caused by blood loss, iron deficiency, kidney failure, or cancer. Iron deficiency is the most common cause. Iron-deficiency anemia is more prevalent in women than men, with increased occurrence during pregnancy. Mild to moderate iron-deficiency anemia may go unnoticed if an individual does not present common signs or symptoms. Common signs and symptoms of iron-deficiency anemia include fatigue, shortness of breath, or chest pain. If iron-deficiency anemia goes untreated, complications may include heart problems, increased susceptibility to illness and infections, and a higher risk of pregnancy complications such as preterm birth or low birth weight.
Healthy People Objective NWS-21.3:Reduce iron deficiency among females aged 12 to 49 years
U.S. Target: 9.4 percent