Funding needed for stopping smoking services say midwives on new smoking in pregnancy stats

By RCM on 03 July 2018 Public Health Smoking

Today NHS Digital has published statistics on smoking rates including smoking during pregnancy.  Just under 11% of pregnant women were known to be smokers at the time of delivery in 2017/18.  This is similar to the level recorded in 2016/17, but down from 16% in 2006/07.

Commenting on the statistics Clare Livingstone, Professional Policy Advisor at the Royal College of Midwives, said: “Whilst the fall over recent years is welcome it looks like the rates of smoking in pregnancy are levelling off. This is a concern because of the serious problems that can occur as a result of smoking whilst pregnant.

“For example smoking in pregnancy is one of the major factors in the UK’s relatively high stillbirth rates compared to many other western nations. If we can reduce the numbers smoking in pregnancy, we can start to reduce stillbirths.

“However, this needs a concerted effort from the Government to fund stopping smoking services that support people to stop smoking, many of which have been hit by cuts to public health budgets.”

The NHS Digital Statistics on Smoking - England , 2018 can be viewed at

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