Pregnant people will be offered vouchers worth up to £400 (almost $500) to quit smoking in a pilot scheme in the North West of England. The program hopes to reduce harms and address widening health inequalities.
Smoking is the leading cause of cancer, preventable illness and premature mortality in England, with almost 80,000 annual smoking-related deaths. Smoking during pregnancy is associated with a range of harms to parent and child. In 2019, the UK government set an objective for England to be ”smoke-free” by 2030, meaning a national smoking rate of 5 percent or below. [...]