Letter: Letter: Smoking while pregnant unsafe

<strong>To the editor:</strong>

The team spirit in Johnson County is second to none when it comes to collaborating on community health issues.

One such issue is our pregnancy smoking rate. In 2016, 12.9 percent of live births in Johnson County were to mothers who smoked during pregnancy. By comparison, the lowest rate in the state was in Hamilton County with 2.4 percent.

Our high rate is particularly alarming because smoking during pregnancy is an indicator in the infant mortality rate.

Meeting that challenge head on, individuals representing Johnson County WIC, Partnership for a Healthier Johnson County, Johnson Memorial Health and the Johnson County Health Department collaborated on and received a “Baby and Me, Tobacco Free” grant from the Indiana State Department of Health.

As detailed in a Daily Journal story on Jan. 1, the program is open to pregnant women who commit to quit smoking as well as those who quit smoking before pregnancy if they meet certain qualifications. Participants, as well as one person in their household who smokes, can earn diaper vouchers through the program which will be administered through the WIC office.

Healthy mommy, healthy baby and free diapers – a win-win-win situation. Thank you to all involved with this initiative.
<p style="text-align: right"><strong> Nancy Voris</strong></p>
<p style="text-align: right"><strong>Tobacco Free Johnson County</strong></p>