UK National Smoking Cessation Conference - UKNSCC
2009 UK National Smoking Cessation Conference - London more...

Women’s experience of smoking cessation support during pregnancy
Ashesh Modi, Specialist Registrar in Public Health, NHS Oldham, Merseyside, UK


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Smoking cessation in pregnancy session

Smoking cessation programmes in pregnancy are known to be effective but uptake is often poor. This study aimed to explore the experiences of women who smoked during pregnancy, in order to devise strategies to make services more attractive.

Methods: Focus groups were conducted amongst women who had smoked during pregnancy and analysed using the principles of grounded theory.

Findings: Conflicting influences affected smoking status and engagement with services. The discourse of stopping smoking in early pregnancy was a strong motivator to quit but perceptions of increasing stress with impending childbirth and concerns of the adverse effects of stopping smoking, promoted continued smoking in later pregnancy. Personalised care and empathetic health professional’s characterised successful engagement with the services. Barriers to accessing services were a combination of individual feelings such as disillusionment and rationalisation of continued smoking with the perception that services were inflexible to cater to individual needs. A typology of pregnant women who smoked emerged in the analysis which could aid frontline staff working with this group of women.

Conclusion: This study described a framework which would put the views of the service users in the centre of the strategy to reduce the proportion of pregnant women who smoke.


About the presenter
Ashesh Modi is a Specialist Registrar in Public Health working with the North West Specialised Commissioning Team. After graduating from India, he completing his Basic Surgical Training with the Mersey Deanery and then joined the North West Public Health Training Scheme in 2006. This project was completed as his dissertation for his Masters in Public Health from the University of Liverpool. After obtaining his Certificate of Completion of Specialist Training in 2011, Ash is keen to develop his interest in the Public Health aspects of Addiction.


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