Number of pregnant women who smoke falls in Hackney

The number of women in Hackney who classed themselves as a smoker when they had their baby has fallen to the lowest rate in the borough since recording began in 2005.

New figures show that 4.8 per cent of women were still smokers when they gave birth in 2012/13, compared to 6.3 per cent in 2011/12, according to the Health and Social Care Information Centre. The London average is 5.7 per cent.

Cllr Jonathan McShane, Cabinet Member for Health, Social Care and Culture, Hackney Council
Smoking during pregnancy can cause a range of serious health problems for babies, including low birth weight and premature birth. It can also lead to miscarriage, stillbirth and can even cause a baby to die in the first few weeks of his or her life. The Council and other health services in Hackney offer a range of services to help pregnant women to stop smoking and I would urge women to take up this support.
Cllr Jonathan McShane, Cabinet Member for Health, Social Care and Culture, Hackney Council

Hackney Council funds a specialist midwife at Homerton University Hospital to support pregnant women to stop smoking.

Carolyn Bovelle, specialist midwife, said: “We are pleased to see that our work is having a real impact on the health of mothers and their babies in Hackney. I work closely with our Stop Smoking team to  provide women and their partners with support and advice about how to stop smoking during pregnancy and, we hope, after baby is born.”

It is estimated that about one third of all perinatal deaths (miscarriage, stillbirth after 24 weeks and death in the first four weeks of a baby's life) in the UK are caused by the mum smoking, according to the British Medical Association's Board of Science and Education.

How to get help to stop smoking

Pregnant women can contact Carolyn Bovelle, specialist midwife, on 020 8510 7732 or carolyn.bovelle@homerton.nhs.uk

Alternatively, speak to any healthcare professional such as your community midwife, pharmacist or GP who can support you to quit successfully.

For more information on support to stop smoking please call 0800 169 1943, email smokers-clinic@qmul.ac.uk or visit Smoke Free City & Hackney.