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State Estimates of Neonatal Health-Care Costs Associated with Maternal Smoking —United States, 1996

October 7, 2004 / Vol. 53 / No. 39

Smoking during pregnancy can cause poor outcomes for both the pregnant woman and her unborn child and also result in added health-care expenditures. To characterize costs by state, CDC analyzed pregnancy risk surveillance and birth certificate data to estimate the association between maternal smoking and the probability of infant admission to a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). Neonatal health-care costs, in 1996 dollars, were assigned on the basis of data from private health insurance claims. This report summarizes the results of that analysis, which estimated smoking-attributable neonatal expenditures (SAEs) of $366 million in the United States in 1996, or $704 per maternal smoker, and indicated wide variations in SAEs among states. These costs are preventable. States can use these data to justify or support their prevention and cessation treatment strategies.

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