CWA Flash E-Newsletter - April 10, 2018
In This Issue:
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Upcoming Training & Conferences
Job Listings
Breastfeeding Advocacy
Our Projects:
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CalFresh: Better Food for Better Living
CalFresh, California's name for food stamps, or the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), can add to many WIC families' food budgets and help them put healthy and nutritious food on the table, while also stimulating our economy and supporting communities! Check out our  CalFresh information and toolkit , and if you missed the recent webinar, CalFresh and WIC: Better Together! listen to the recording and use the resources.
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Starting a Fitness Routine
Exercise can protect you from disease, slim your waistline and extend your lifespan. But doing it regularly is easier said than done. Here are ways that you can start a fitness routine - and stick to it - so you can reap the vast benefits of exercise.
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CA Legislative Season - Full Swing! 
Policy hearings are underway and CWA is supporting not only bills, but also budget proposals. The bills cover a variety of topics, including workplace breastfeeding accommodations  SB 937 (Wiener) , health screenings for children  AB 11 (McCarty) , "express lane eligibility" pathways between WIC and Medi-Cal (includes an accompanying budget proposal) AB 2579 (Burke), and low-income students' access to meals AB 1871 (Bonta) . With CA Breastfeeding Coalition, CWA is co-sponsoring a budget proposal to increase reimbursement for breast pumps in Medi-Cal. ACTION:  Stay abreast of these and all the bills and budget proposals on our  State Policy page  as they move through the legislative and budget processes in coming months. We will ask for letters of support at key decision points!

CWA News
Conference Countdown!
Three weeks from now we'll be rocking the house at CWA's 26th annual Conference and Trade Show, Bridge to Health: Advancing WIC to Support Today's FamiliesApril 29-May 2. We look forward to a packed few days of professional education, networking, inspiration and fun! Be sure to check the final agendaget your friends together for movie night, and plan how you'll earn professional education units as a RN, RD, IBCLC or other lactation provider. Bring your exercise clothes and catch a class in yoga, tao kung, strength training or more- it is a Well WIC Conference! ACTION: Follow us on Instagram and Facebook and register your team for our eWIC Go! Competition. You or your team can register on-site!
Webinar: Lactating Employees Workplace Rights
Please join California Breastfeeding Coalition, and CWA on April 26th 12-1:00, to learn about the laws, remedies, enforcement, and gaps in lactation policies and how to help guide parents facing barriers at work. Several workplace situations will be presented by Julia Parrish of Legal Aid at Work. In addition, we will share statewide efforts to improve workplace rights for lactating parents, including recently enacted improvements to Paid Family Leave  and job-protection, comprehensive local advancements in San Francisco, and current pending legislation at the state level. ACTION:  Register for the webinar!

Our Top News Picks
CA Hospitals - Improve Quality of Care or Get Dropped from Covered CA
Covered California , the state's ACA marketplace, is taking that mandate to improve the quality of care seriously: in the next three-year contract, any hospital that doesn't meet certain targets for safety and quality  can be excluded from the health plans sold through the marketplace. The chosen targets include requiring hospitals to perform fewer unnecessary C-sections and prescribe fewer opioids. Covered California, along with other state health programs, has been working closely with hospitals through a partnership called the  Smart Care Collaborative to make sure that hospitals can identify and correct problems. Covered California's move is nationally significant given the consequences for hospitals, and the agency's reach - 1.4 million people buy coverage through the marketplace, and they shop among plans offered by 11 state-approved insurance companies. Overall, California's hospitals are on board with the goal. Of the 243 maternity hospitals in the state, 40 percent have already met the target, and another 40 percent have taken advantage of coaching and consulting, to help educate the doctors on how they can adjust their practice. Health plans can request exceptions to Covered California's contract rules, in order to keep non-complying hospitals in their networks, as long as they document their reasoning.
CA Kids Poverty and Inequity
Looking at kid's risk of poverty from the lens of inequity, the CA Budget and Policy Center, recently released a Data Hit update . Converting percent of kids in poverty to numbers of kids in poverty reveals that if the poverty rate for kids of color, was as low as the rate for white kids, 977,000 fewer kids would be impoverished. That staggering number is a call to action for all sectors of planning and policy development, big and small, to lift up all California kids.
Probiotics, Fish Oil in Pregnancy May Reduce Kids' Allergies
Probiotics and fish oil supplements during pregnancy and breastfeeding may reduce the risk for food allergies and eczema in early childhood, researchers report . In a review of hundreds of studies, they found 19 randomized controlled trials with strong evidence showing that compared to no supplements, probiotics taken after the 36th week of pregnancy and the first months of lactation were associated with a 22 percent reduction in the risk for eczema in children. They also analyzed six randomized trials with solid evidence that women who took omega-3 fatty acid supplements during pregnancy and lactation reduced the risk for childhood allergic reaction to eggs, the most common food allergy, by 31 percent. Fish oil has known anti-inflammatory effects, which may explain why it may reduce the risk for food allergies, but the reasons for the possible effect of probiotics on the risk for eczema is unknown. People who may want to use probiotic or fish oil supplements during their pregnancies should discuss a plan with their doctor.
Antibiotics, Antacids May Increase Allergy Risk for Infants
Babies given antibiotics or antacids in infancy may be at increased risk for allergies in childhood. Researchers studied  792,130 infants covered by a health insurance program over an average of 4.5 years. Of these, 131,708 received antibiotics, 60,209 got histamine-2 receptor antagonists and 13,687 were given proton pump inhibitors. Both H2 blockers and P.P.I.s are prescribed for gastroesophageal reflex, or GERD. The study found that infants given H2 blockers or P.P.I.s were more than twice as likely to have a food allergy as those who were not; the risk was especially high for allergy to cow's milk. Those given antibiotics were at a 14 percent increased risk for food allergy, a 51 percent increased risk for anaphylaxis (a potentially fatal type of allergic reaction), and more than double the risk for asthma. The authors suggest that both antacids and antibiotics disrupt the normal intestinal bacteria and that this may explain the association.

2018 Breastfeeding Legislation & Policy Update
The USBC has launched the " Breastfeeding Legislation & Policy Update ." The toolkit features key information on a wide range of legislation and policy topics that impact breastfeeding families. Each update includes background information, current status, individual and organizational action opportunities, key messages, sample social media content, and relevant resources and information. The toolkit will be periodically updated to reflect the latest action opportunities and Congressional action. Stakeholders are invited to submit additions/edits to the policy toolkit by contacting [email protected] . Please share resources or action opportunities from your organization at any time. 
Feeding Guidelines for Infants and Young Toddlers
The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's Healthy Eating Research group, published " Feeding Guidelines for Infants and Young Toddlers: A Responsive Parenting Approach ," current evidence-based guidelines for feeding infants and toddlers, including information about breastfeeding and breast milk. The aim of the guidelines is to empower caregivers to address the nutrition and well-being of infants and toddlers by offering them healthier food and beverage options in response to their behavioral cues. The guidelines can be used by parents and caregivers in the home, as well as be applied in child-care settings where many infants and toddlers are served. The report is available in both English and Spanish.
Breastfeeding and Incarceration Toolkit
The Michigan Breastfeeding Network has published the new " Breastfeeding and Incarceration Toolkit " as part of the  Breastfeeding Roadblock Kits series. The toolkit guides readers through the issues surrounding breastfeeding and incarceration. It includes template prison lactation policies, resources for incarcerated mothers and breastfeeding advocates, and a platform for sharing stories. And check out our bill monitor report to learn about a CA bill to support incarcerated women who want to breastfeed.
Birth Control Apps, Helpful for those in "Contraception Deserts" 
Women can now access several types of hormonal contraception without an in-person visit to a healthcare provider, using one of several new companies, such as  NURX , Maven , and Lemonaid Health . In some rural areas, being able to buy prescription contraceptives online can ease the burden of living in a "contraception desert" and be more private, more affordable, and less time-consuming than driving an hour or more to the closest clinic. One such app, NURX, is available in 18 states. To be sent contraceptives, users must fill out a health history questionnaire which is reviewed by a clinician who then makes a suggestion about what type of hormonal contraception might be best for that individual. If the patient has a question about the product she's considering, she can send an instant message or call to chat with a provider, 24 hours a day. Apps like NURX that give women access to at least some types of contraceptives are definitely helpful, experts say, but they  will never substitute for the missing medical clinics - places where, beyond contraception, women could also get life-saving services, such as pap smears, breast exams and cervical cancer screenings.

California WIC Association
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Phone: 916-572-0700; Fax: 916-572-0760