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Tobacco cessation, prevention plan takes aim at pregnant women

Posted: Tuesday, Mar 26th, 2013

EUGENE — As the coordinated care organization (CCO) in Lane County, Trillium Community Health Plan is working to provide better care and better health at a lower cost to approximately 55,000 Oregon Health Plan (OHP) beneficiaries. Prevention efforts will be essential to the successful achievement of these goals.

Adult tobacco use in Lane County is high at 18 percent. For adults covered by OHP the rate is even higher at 34 percent. More troubling is that 35 to 40 percent of pregnant women on OHP use tobacco.

That statistic is troubling to the CCO’s Clinical Advisory Panel members.

“We recognized the significance of acting now, since tobacco cessation is particularly cost effective among pregnant women,” said panel member Rick Kincade, M.D.

“Studies demonstrate that healthcare costs are saved for every pregnant smoker who quits. And we improve the health of the community in the process.”

Trillium identified five strategies for tobacco cessation and prevention including intensive treatment for tobacco dependence and incentives to help pregnant women quit.

“We were shocked to see how many pregnant women smoke during their pregnancy,” said Holly Jo L. Hodges, M.D. “When a pregnant woman smokes she not only endangers her health, but that of her baby.”

Lane County is higher than the state average for babies with low birth weight. Tobacco use is known to be a contributor.

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For the complete article see the 03-27-2013 issue.

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