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Health, Science and Environment

Grant targets tobacco use during pregnancy

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Smoking during pregnancy is more common in northern Michigan than any other part of the state.

A $33,000 grant will help provide support systems for pregnant women in northern Michigan.

The March of Dimes has awarded the funding to the Northern Michigan Perinatal Collaborative Network

Michelle Klein is the Director of Personal Health at the Benzie-Leelanau District Health Department.

“Our smoking rates for women who are pregnant are much higher than the state of Michigan, and some counties that we have up here are as high as almost 50 percent of pregnant women who are smoking.”

Klein said the plan is to develop a support system of health professionals and family members for pregnant women addicted to tobacco.

“What we’re doing is we have trained quite a few people on a program that’s called the SCRIPT program, specifically designed to work with pregnant women and give them support for themselves and for their family members.”

Klein said smoking during pregnancy can cause developmental issues in the child, both physically and mentally.  

She said the best option is to quit smoking before you are pregnant to ensure child safety.  

For additional help trying to quit tobacco, call the Michigan Tobacco Quit Line at 1800-QUITNOW, or 1800-784-8669.