Effectiveness of a Large Prenatal Tobacco Reduction Program

Project Timeline: 7/1/2004 - 6/30/2007

The purpose of this study was to objectively evaluate the effectiveness of the Partnership for Smoke-Free Families Program (PSF), a smoking cessation program designed to screen for and educate pregnant women who are still smoking at the time of their first prenatal visit. Specifically, the evaluation assessed whether PSF patients had lower tobacco exposure levels, relapse and delayed program effects during pregnancy, levels of tobacco exposure between mid-pregnancy and end of pregnancy, and the accuracy of the PSF prenatal screen instrument.

The evaluation was conducted by combining data collected for the PSF program with data and specimens collected as part of a previous TRDRP-funded study of tobacco exposure during pregnancy (Project Baby’s Breath, or PBB) to determine whether the PSF program reduces active smoking levels among women who smoked before pregnancy. Tobacco exposure was measured using laboratory analysis for cotinine (a nicotine metabolite) in stored blood specimens collected at mid-pregnancy or at the time of delivery. Rates of quitting, levels of exposure, and smoking relapse during pregnancy were compared between PSF program participants and a control group of similar size.

Findings were provided such that they could be used to guide PSF in making program improvements, as well as decision-makers to enhance other and future programs aimed at reducing tobacco exposure during the prenatal period.