Smoking in Pregnancy Challenge Group

About the Challenge Group

The Smoking in Pregnancy Challenge Group was established in 2012 in response to a challenge from the then Public Health Minister to produce recommendations on how the smoking in pregnancy ambition contained in the Government’s tobacco strategy could be realised.

The Group is a partnership between the Royal College of Midwives and the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, the voluntary sector and academia. It presented its report and recommendations to the Public Health Minister in June 2013 and continues to meet annually to review progress.

The Smoking in Pregnancy Challenge Group is jointly chaired by Francine Bates, Chief Executive of The Lullaby Trust, and Professor Linda Bauld of UKCTAS and the University of Sterling.

Publications and resources

The Group has produced a number of publications related to smoking in pregnancy. You can see these below, along with a number of other useful resources.

In July 2017 the Smoking in Pregnancy Challenge Group  published a report called Smokefree Skills: an assessment of maternity workforce training.

This report provides an analysis of the training that midwives and obstetricians receive to address smoking in pregnant women, and what further training is needed. Smoking is a major cause of stillbirth and sudden infant death, and also leads to more babies being born with health problems and with a low birth weight.

You can read the full report here and the executive summary of the report here..

Smoking in Pregnancy Challenge Group publications

Carbon Monoxide Screening: advice for health professionals
Test your breath: information for pregnant women (Also available in Bulgarian | Somalian | Romanian | Lithuanian | Urdu | Turkish | Punjabi | Portuguese | Polish | Greek)
Use of electronic cigarettes in pregnancy: A guide for midwives and other healthcare professionals

Smoking in pregnancy Mapping Project Report (commissioned by Public Health England and conducted by the Tobacco Control Collaborating Centre)
Mapping Report Case Studies
Smoking Cessation in Pregnancy: A review of the Challenge
Smoking Cessation in pregnancy: A call to action
Shared key messages

E-cigarettes in pregnancy infographic

The Smoking in Pregnancy Challenge Group has produced this infographic designed to support conversations with pregnant women who smoke and are inquiring about electronic cigarettes – E-cigarettes in pregnancy: Infographic for pregnant women. 

It may be offered to women who are interested and would like further information to support their consideration regarding use of electronic cigarettes during pregnancy. It is not intended for wider distribution or circulation amongst pregnant women and/or non-smokers. Further information for healthcare professionals is available in Use of electronic cigarettes in pregnancy: a guide for midwives and other healthcare professionals

Additional resources

Use of e-cigarettes (vaping) in the home: advice for parents
National Centre for Smoking Cessation & Training – Smoking Cessation: a briefing for midwifery staff
ASH Fact Sheet: Smoking and Reproduction
Tommy’s Smoking in Pregnancy Costs Calculator
The Lullaby Trust: Factsheet on Sudden Infant Death and Smoking
Healthy Lives, Healthy People: A Tobacco Control Plan for England

Smoking in Pregnancy Challenge Group conference 2017

On 6 December, around 90 delegates attended the Smokefree Action Coalition conference in London. You can learn more about the event, and view the presentations, here.

Response to inquiry on e-cigarettes

In December 2017 the Smoking in Pregnancy Challenge Group submitted its response to the House of Commons Committee on Science and Technology Inquiry into e-cigarettes. You can read the submission here and learn more about the inquiry here.

Latest news from the Challenge Group

7 December 2017, Smoking in Pregnancy Challenge Group press release: Rising rate in women smoking during pregnancy with big variations in performance of areas.

18 July 2017, Smoking in Pregnancy Challenge Group press release: New report finds midwives and doctors need more training to address smoking in pregnancy.

Members of the Smoking in Pregnancy Challenge Group

Find Smoking in Pregnancy Challenge Group members on Twitter