In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice invites the general public and other public agencies to comment on this proposed information collection. This collection is a new collection to conduct the Third National Survey of WIC Participants (NSWP-III).
The Third National Survey of WIC Participants (NSWP-III) is designed to provide nationally representative estimates of improper payments in the WIC program arising from errors in the certification or denial of WIC applicants, to investigate potential state and local agency characteristics that may correlate with these errors, and to assess WIC participants' reasons for satisfaction or dissatisfaction with the program. The NSWP-III builds on three previous studies and reports spanning several decades.
The study has two purposes. The first is to obtain the data necessary to accomplish the study objectives. To accomplish study objectives, the following data collections are planned:
- a Certification Survey with up to 2,000 recently certified WIC participants;
- a Denied Applicant Survey with up to 240 WIC applicants who did not qualify for the program;
- a Program Experiences Survey with up to 1,500 current WIC program participants;
- a Former Participant Case Study with 520 inactive WIC program participants who have stopped redeeming WIC benefits;
- a state agency Survey with 90 agencies, including 50 states and the District of Columbia, the 34 Indian Tribal Organizations (ITOs), and 5 U.S. Territories;
- and a Local WIC Agency Survey with 965 local WIC agency directors. In addition, 20 Local WIC Agency staff will be maintaining a Denied Applicants Log.
The second purpose is to pilot a new methodology for the future annual estimates of improper payments in the WIC program. Under this approach, the data collection instruments and recruiting materials, developed for the 2018 Certification Survey and Denied Applicants Survey, will be fielded in 2019 and 2020 by replacing one of 10 “panels” from the 2018 sample with newly selected WIC participants (180 per year) and denied applicants (24 per year); these data will be pooled with the extant 2018 data from the remaining (non-replaced) panels to update the estimates of improper payments in each year. Data collection activities in these 2 years will include recruiting recently certified WIC participants to complete the Certification Survey and denied WIC applicants to complete the Denied Applicant Survey.
- Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information shall have practical utility;
- the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions that were used;
- ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and
- ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, including use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques, and/or other forms of information technology.