HUNDREDS of Wigan mums-to-be are still putting their tobacco habit ahead of their unborn children’s health each year, shaming figures reveal today.
Some 15.9 per cent of pregnant women are still smoking at the time of pregnancy and while the figure has dropped from 16.8 per cent this time last year, health chiefs are still warning of the dangers posed to those who continue with the habit.
Health chiefs in the borough say pregnant women who smoke will be offered an opportunity to access support; this could be via the Midwife, Stop Smoking Service or Health Trainers, as part of the smoking cessation pathway with Maternity at WWL.
They also say midwives are trained to level two (smoking cessation), which includes carbon monoxide monitoring and that there is now a requirement within the Stop Smoking Service Specification to also ensure that partners of pregnant women are also systematically offered support to ensure risk is minimised.
Professor Kate Ardern said: “I warmly welcome yet another annual one per cent prevalence drop in the number of women who smoke in pregnancy however there is still much work to do reduce the undoubted harm to both pregnant women and their babies of exposure to tobacco– the aim of Smoke Free Wigan and Leigh is to make smoke-free pregnancy a reality.
“To this end we commission a comprehensive smoking cessation programme which is offered to all pregnant women in the borough who smoke.”
The local Stop Smoking Service is available by calling 0500 7867 669 or visit www.bridgewater.nhs.uk/stopsmoking or for more visit: