Thursday, February 19, 2009

Anti-Tobacco Crew Asks Pregnant Women to "Quit for Love"

Tobacco Free Allegheny (TFA) has begun a campaign against maternal smoking both during and after pregnancies. The effort, called "Quit for Love," is a pilot project made possible by a $24,920 grant from the March of Dimes. TFA was selected as one of eight organizations statewide that would begin the pilot program. TFA Executive Director Cindy Thomas says while many women quit during their pregnancies, they plan to resume after the birth of the child. This can cause multiple problems in a child's development, including chronic lung problems and increased chance of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). Thomas added that while having the mother of the child stop smoking is certainly a main goal, the ultimate aim of Quit for Love is to have the entire family stop smoking for the newborn's sake. Pittsburgh had the highest percentage of maternal smokers in the nation's 50 largest cities in 2000, according to an Annie E. Casey Foundation study.

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