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Families receive welcome boost for healthier pregnancy

New grant to support parents getting ready for childbirth.
The new Health in Pregnancy Grant launched by the government has been welcomed as a vital support for expectant mums.

From April 6th, women at or beyond the 25th week of pregnancy are eligible for a one-off payment of £190 to help meet the costs of preparing for a new baby.

In response, Paul Dornan, head of policy at the Child Poverty Action Group, said the extra money will be well-spent by cash-strapped parents-to-be adding to their family in the current climate.

He said: "With some of the important costs that we know around childbirth, nutrition is really important for early child development, but also I think there are a lot of material costs around a child entering into a household."

The latest figures from the Office for National Statistics show that women are having, on average, 1.92 children in England and Wales, according to the Total Fertility Rate for 2007.

In 2007, the General Fertility Rate was 62.0 live births per thousand women aged 15 to 44, up from 60.2 recorded for the previous year.

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