Pregnant smokers offered $300 vouchers to quit

A quit smoking programme that promises gift vouchers to expectant mothers who kick the habit is being hailed a success.

A Northland health provider is giving Kiwi mums up to $300 to spend on things like petrol and groceries - provided they blow clean during a weekly lung function test.

With one in six New Zealand women and and just under half of Maori women still smoking during pregnancy, doctors have been looking at new ways to bring the figures down.

So now they're being offered the extra incentive in the hope it can keep their addiction at bay permanently.

The vouchers can't be redeemed for cash, alcohol or cigarettes.

The Kaitaia programme runs for 12 weeks. After its first course it says it has got a 44% success rate.

Counties Manukau has been trialling a similar scheme for the past year and is looking to expand.

Sixty-four percent of women had quit after a month on the programme and just over half of them were still smokefree at the end of the three-month course.

The programme promises gift vouchers to expectant mums who kick the habit. Source: 1 NEWS

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