Number of pregnant smokers in Barking and Dagenham joint highest in London
- Credit: PA Wire/Press Association Images
Barking and Dagenham has the joint highest rate of smoking by London mums-to-be.
Tied with Greenwich, 8.6 per cent of women were recorded as smokers at the time of birth in the year leading up to March 2016.
While this is below the national target of 11pc, it is almost six times higher then in Westminster where just 1.5pc of new mums smoked during pregnancy.
Analysis of the statistics by vapourlites.com also found that just over 5pc of pregnant women are smokers at their first midwife appointment and this only drops by 0.2pc to 4.9pc by the time of birth.
Smoking during pregnancy reduces foetal growth and increases the risk of stillbirth.