4132.0 Value Enhanced Nutrition Assessment (VENA) in WIC: Creating New Policy and Guidance to Maximize WIC’s Role as a Premier Public Health Nutrition Program

Tuesday, November 6, 2007: 12:30 PM
Value Enhanced Nutrition Assessment (VENA) is a new initiative from the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) designed to improve nutrition services in the WIC Program. As a result of the 2002 Institute of Medicine (IOM) report: Dietary Assessment in the WIC Program, FNS, utilizing a Federal/State collaborative, developed and issued VENA policy and guidance. While the IOM report was specific to dietary assessment, FNS took the opportunity to enhance the entire nutrition assessment process. VENA promotes a participant-centered positive approach to nutrition assessment – one that is based on desired health outcomes rather than deficiency findings. In addition, the WIC Program, through VENA, will emphasize a more qualitative versus quantitative dietary assessment. The goal of VENA is to expand the focus of nutrition assessment, beyond program eligibility determination, toward the delivery of targeted nutrition interventions that assist participants in making healthy lifestyle and dietary choices. VENA is comprehensive nutrition assessment policy and guidance intended for State agency use in the development of WIC nutrition assessment protocols. VENA demonstrates a shift in FNS management style of policy implementation; meeting States where they are and allowing States to develop individualized strategies, instead of setting uniform implementation strategies. Specific examples of VENA implementation at the FNS Regional Office and State level will illustrate some of the individualized strategies taking place. VENA will serve to enhance the nutrition services of the WIC program, and to ensure the integrity of the WIC Program as a premier public health nutrition program.
Session Objectives: By the end of the oral presentation, meeting attendees will be able to: 1. Identify the Institute of Medicine report that was the impetus for the VENA initiative. 2. Describe the purpose and development of the VENA initiative. 3. List the expected outcomes of VENA implementation. 4. Discuss the unique way VENA will be managed by the Food and Nutrition Service and implemented by WIC State agencies.
Lissa Ong, MPH, RD
Lissa Ong, MPH, RD

See individual abstracts for presenting author's disclosure statement and author's information.

Organized by: Food and Nutrition
Endorsed by: Maternal and Child Health

CE Credits: CME, Health Education (CHES), Nursing

See more of: Food and Nutrition