EDINBURG, Texas (ValleyCentral) – There has been a shortage of baby formula across the country and the impact is being felt here in the valley. ValleyCentral made a visit to the WIC Clinic in Edinburg which help new mothers, they tell us the problem has been going on for months.
“I absolutely sympathize with them, and we try to help them to the best of our ability,” said Kassandra Suarez, Clinic Coordinator for Texas WIC.
The Texas WIC program helps provide new mothers with supplemental food for their children, including baby formula. But the ongoing shortage has caused a lot of problems in the valley.
Suarez tells ValleyCentral that the clinics have now been seeing an uptick of calls from new parents needing help.
“That’s been happening daily we have been getting calls from clients we get calls from health care providers wanting to know what the options for the WIC clients are,” Suarez said. “Daily we are on the phones calling local vendors calling out drop ship vendors to ship different formulas for them and what they have in stock.”
New moms have been going through this shortage since December. The main cause of the problem is the supply chain delays and the recent recalls of several popular baby formula brands. The recalled brands include Similac, Alimentum, and Elecare.
While Texas WIC clinics do not have baby formula on hand, it goes through local vendors to help provide moms with the formulas they may need.
The WIC program is also in constant contact with the different manufacturers of different formulas,” Suarez said. ” They are letting us know when those formulas are being shipped out to the different areas, they are also expanding the nutrition formula options for our clients.”
While options have been limited, many are now trying to turn to alternatives.
“The alternatives have been comparable formulas, just a different brand,” Suarez said. ” We have been able to offer Enfamil products, Good Start products, Nestle products.”
But in the meantime providers like Texas WIC are asking mothers to be patient, and hope they can get some relief soon.
“We hope to have this situation back to normal for the next few months but as clients are calling in we want to reassure them that we can help them,” Suarez said. ” If they can’t find it in the store, we are helping clients to come back to this clinic so that we can assist them in finding a different formula.”
New mothers needing help from Texas WIC can contact them through their website, or call 1-800-889-5595.