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Health Resources and Services Administration
Maternal and Child Health

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Perinatal Depression: Emerging Perspectives & Practices

Wednesday, June 29, 2005, 2:00-3:00 p.m. ET

Overview | Presenter Information | Agenda | Resources | Archive


It isn’t just the “baby blues.” According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality’s (AHRQ’s) 2005 report Perinatal Depression: Prevalence, Screening, Accuracy, and Screening Outcomes, depression is as common in women during pregnancy as it is after giving birth. Perinatal depression, a condition that encompasses major and minor depressive episodes that occur either during pregnancy or within the first 12 months after delivery, may affect as many as 5 to 25 percent of new mothers. The repercussions of this are of significant public health concern, because perinatal depression is the leading cause of disease-related disability among women, resulting in depressive episodes and negatively impacting women’s children and families.

This DataSpeak program opens with a senior official from the Health Resources and Services Administration’s Maternal and Child Health Bureau, who discusses why perinatal depression is of concern and describes current Federal activities to address the issue. A representative from AHRQ follows to share the findings and implications of AHRQ’s newly released evidence report, as will a senior researcher from the Children’s National Medical Center, who presents new data on the prevalence of perinatal depression among various racial and ethnic groups. Finally, a representative of the Illinois Department of Health’s Office of Family Health describes and shares information on efforts to address perinatal depression in the State.