Evaluation of the Health in Pregnancy Grant in Scotland
We are carrying out an 18 month project, funded by NIHR Public Health Research Board (project number 12/3070/02), to evaluate the Health in Pregnancy Grant in Scotland. All pregnant women were eligible for the Health in Pregnancy Grant (HiP) if they had sought health advice from a midwife or doctor. HiP was a payment of £190 made to pregnant women. It was designed to provide additional financial support, in the last months of pregnancy, towards a healthy lifestyle including diet. This may have benefited the health of the child in terms of improving the birthweight. Birthweight is an important outcome that affects health not just in the immediate period following birth but also into childhood and beyond. The effects of birthweight continue into adult health; those born with a lower birthweight are at higher risk of coronary heart disease and stroke in adult life.
We will evaluate whether HiP was cost effective and will therefore be in a position to make a recommendation regarding the appropriateness of re-introducing HiP. The intention of re-introducing the HiP would be to reduce inequalities in birthweight and other outcomes.