Texas moves WIC data to the cloud
- By Derek Major
- Sep 10, 2015
Texas’ Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) program is moving to the Microsoft Government Cloud.
WIC is a health and nutritional program administered at the state level, funded by the Department of Agriculture. Its mission is to improve the diet of infants, children and women who are pregnant, postpartum, breastfeeding and at risk for nutrition-related illness.
Executing that mission, however, is complicated by the state’s current management information system, which was implemented in 1995. Challenges include daily backup and data sync requirements that can force participants to wait until information is synced to receive benefits.
Microsoft’s Cloud Solution for WIC promises to address those bottlenecks. The new system also includes Dynamics CRM Online Government reporting functions and other features to improve scheduling and inventory management for case workers as well as reduce wait times for beneficiaries.
Vexcel, a Microsoft subsidiary, will build and implement the solution. Vexcel recently took 25 staff members to clinics in the city of Austin and Williamson County for a WIC program immersion day. The group learned clinic processes, spoke with employees about their roles and participated in a mock grocery store visit where they could only purchase WIC foods.
A Microsoft representative told GCN the new system will roll out on a pilot basis in late 2016 and run for a minimum of four months. Full deployment will require federal approval.
Derek Major is a former reporter for GCN.