Guest blog by Louse Harrington, Development and Impact Manager at the NSPCC
Up to one in five mums and one in 10 dads experience perinatal mental health problems (Bauer, 2016 and NHS England, 2018). However, access to the right support at the right time isn’t guaranteed and the pandemic has exacerbated things. During the last year, for many expectant parents, government restrictions have meant being away from supportive family and friends, dealing with new pressures, and uncertainty around birth arrangements. For some, this combination of challenges has intensified feelings of stress, anxiety and apprehension.
Through NSPCC’s Fight for a Fair Start campaign we’ve been calling on governments across the UK to ensure training and resources to spot perinatal mental health problems are available so parents can receive the support they need, at the earliest opportunity, for themselves and their babies. And where parents need specialist care and support, the NSPCC want governments to ensure it’s available to them, wherever they live.
To support improvements to early help on offer to parents, we’re sharing what we’ve learnt from adapting our preventative mental health service, Pregnancy in Mind, to virtual delivery, enabling us to still be here for families when they need us most. Continue reading Making remote services work: what NSPCC learnt from providing support to expectant parents during the pandemic
Guest blog by Everyone’s Business Scotland coordinator, Laura Bennison
A record-breaking election
The Scottish parliamentary elections on 6 May saw the highest turnout in its history, with 66% of the population casting their vote. The Scottish National Party has been handed a fresh five-year term in government at Holyrood, their fourth in a row.
We hope to continue our work with Clare Haughey MSP, pending Cabinet decisions. Continue reading The latest from the Everyone’s Business campaign in Scotland
Guest blog by Everyone’s Business Champion, Raj
In recognition of Maternal Mental Health Awareness week and today’s ‘Paternal Mental Health’ theme, I wanted to put a virtual pen to paper and share my experience. Continue reading Perinatal Mental Health: a partner’s perspective
Guest Blog by Elaine Amoah, Assistant Psychologist in South London and the Maudsley NHS Foundation NHS Trust
During this Maternal Mental Health Awareness Week 2021, led by the Perinatal Mental Health Partnership UK, I am reflecting on the theme ‘Journeys to Recovery’. Before the Covid-19 pandemic, I completed a study on Black, Asian and minority ethnic women and access to perinatal mental health services for low mood and depression. The research highlighted inequalities in accessing services for Black, Asian and minority ethnic women which is ongoing and urgently needs addressing. This is especially important with the current circumstances of the pandemic as evidenced by the recent report commissioned by the Maternal Mental Health Alliance and conducted by Centre for Mental Health and the Parent-Infant Foundation ‘Babies in Lockdown’ report. Continue reading Black, Asian and minority ethnic women and access to perinatal mental health services
Uned Gobaith (‘Unit of Hope’) is now officially open for referrals. The new interim Mother and Baby Unit (MBU) in Swansea Bay University Health Board will provide specialist inpatient care to new and expectant mums who experience serious mental health problems. Continue reading New Mother and Baby Unit opens its doors to women and families in Wales
When is Maternal Mental Health Awareness Week?
Monday 3rd – Sunday 9th May 2021
What is Maternal Mental Health Awareness Week?
Maternal Mental Health Awareness Week is a week-long campaign dedicated to talking about mental health problems during and after pregnancy.
It’s all about raising public and professional awareness of perinatal mental health problems, advocating for women affected by it, changing attitudes and helping families access the information, care and support they need to recover.
Continue reading Maternal Mental Health Awareness Week 2021
Around 6,000 new, expectant or bereaved mothers will receive help and support for their mental health through dozens of new dedicated Maternal Mental Health hubs, which are being set up across the country.
The 26 new hubs will bring together maternity services, reproductive health and psychological therapy under one roof as part of the commitment to improving access to perinatal mental health support in the NHS Long Term Plan. Continue reading New mental health services for new, expectant and bereaved mums
The Maternal Mental Health Alliance (MMHA) warmly welcomes the launch of the Government’s Early Years Review – The Best Start for Life: A Vision for the 1,001 Critical Days.
Early Years Health Adviser Andrea Leadsom MP led the review, which details recommended best practice across the health system to ensure babies, children and their parents get the best possible start to their journey. Experts in child and perinatal health have been a key part of the review process, including many MMHA members. Continue reading MMHA response to ‘The Best Start for Life: A Vision for the 1,001 Critical Days’
Guest blog by Dr Hind Khalifeh, consultant perinatal psychiatrist
The pandemic has compounded the mental health problems experienced by pregnant and postnatal women, and at the same time limited their personal and professional support networks. This has put a significant strain on our perinatal mental health services.
The report commissioned by the Maternal Mental Health Alliance (MMHA), conducted by Centre for Mental Health, points to a national picture of services under strain and growing demand, and that’s certainly our experience in our specialist perinatal mental health service in London. Continue reading Services supporting the mental health of new and soon-to-be mums under serious strain
By Dr Sarah Witcombe-Hayes, Everyone’s Business Wales Coordinator
The next Senedd elections are less than 50 days away and the Maternal Mental Health Alliance want to ensure that perinatal mental health is firmly on the agenda.
On Thursday 6th May 2021, the people of Wales will elect members to the newly renamed Senedd Cymru – the Welsh Parliament. This historic election will be the first time that 16 and 17-year-olds have the opportunity to vote since the Senedd was established in 1999.
MMHA has used the strength of our collective voice to launch a Senedd Election Manifesto that calls on all political parties and candidates to prioritise maternal mental health and Turn the Map Green during the next Senedd term. Continue reading MMHA calls on the next Welsh Government to prioritise perinatal mental health