A PROGRAMME to help pregnant women stop smoking has seen a significant rise in success. 

The incentive scheme, set up by NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde (NHSGGC), had a 38 per cent increase in successful candidates quitting smoking in the first seven months of the programme.

If participants complete the Quit Your Way service they are rewarded with financial incentives - £160 of Love2Shop vouchers.

From July 2018 to January 2019 213 people set a “quit date” - a 38 per cent increase from the same period in the previous year. 

New research by medical journal BMJ Open has revealed the link between risks for baby and mother and maternal smoking are far greater than previously thought.

The report, carried out by NHSGGC consultant Dr David Tappin, revealed close links between maternal smoking in pregnancy and childhood hospitalisation.

The study estimates that 7 per cent of deaths in the first month of life and 22 per cent in the first year are related to maternal smoking during pregnancy.

NHSGGC evidence estimates that each year in the UK smoking in pregnancy causes up to 5,000 miscarriages, 300 peri-natal deaths and around 2,200 premature births.

Commenting on the Quit Your Way initiative, NHSGGC consultant Dr Emilia Crighton, said: "We were seeing that many pregnant women were struggling to quit smoking and we felt a fresh approach was needed.

"Many pregnant women who we talk to about the programme feel the incentives give them extra encouragement to stop smoking. The incentive gives them a reward for successfully stopping smoking and staying stopped.

"The feedback we have received is that many of the women we support really appreciate receiving the incentives and the difference they can make. This allows them to buy important things for their baby and for their family."