Researchers at the university reviewed more than 10 million births in England between 1985 and 2011.
The results found that more than 1,500 new-born deaths and stillbirths were prevented within the first four years of the smoking ban being enforced.
Professional policy advisor at the Royal College of Midwives, Janet Fyle commented on the research saying: “The RCM is pleased that it’s vigorous campaigning with partners for the Ban on Smoking in Public Places is having a positive impact on the stillbirth and neonatal death rates. It remains the case, that exposure to cigarette smoke is detrimental to the health and well-being of pregnant women and their unborn babies.”
Shortly before the University of Edinburgh published their findings, other research found that the rate of premature babies also decreased since the smoking legislation was introduced.
Speaking to The Scotsman, honorary research fellow at the University of Edinburgh and paediatrician at the Erasmus University Medical Centre in Rotterdam, Dr Jasper Been said: “Accelerated action to implement smoking bans in the many countries yet to do so is likely to save considerable numbers of young lives and bring a healthier future for our unborn children,” Janet Fyle added.
The research has been published shortly after calls to ban smoking in various public locations including terraces and pub gardens were voiced this week.
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