Drug and alcohol misuse during pregnancy poses a threat to the health of both the developing foetus and the mother yet this complex clinical problem often falls between different stools within the health services. A mother would first have to recognise herself as a drug or alcohol misuser needing help before she came within the ambit of the addiction services. On the other hand, the obstetric agencies, even when they identify a drug problem, usually do not regard themselves as having a role. General practitioners are most likely to have an overall view and therefore to be in the best position to manage the problem. However, many misusers do not register with GPs and, despite calls to the contrary, GPs have not become more widely involved in the management of addiction.
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