Additional Resources

For Maternal Health Care Providers

A number of published resources – including guidelines, toolkits and training modules or materials – are available to help clinicians incorporate screening and management of maternal depression within their practices, As noted above, the USPSTF evidence-based recommendations for depression screening emphasize the importance of having staff-assisted depression care supports within the practice to ensure accurate diagnosis and effective treatment. Women may be more likely to complete treatment when it is provided within their primary care practice. Clinicians are encouraged to utilize these resources to strengthen screening and follow-up systems within their practices.

  • Support and Training to Enhance Primary Care for Postpartum Depression (STEP-PPD). This free training program was developed for the National Institute of Mental Health to educate primary care providers about evidence-based screening, diagnosis, treatment and referral for postpartum depression. Instructions are tailored to the user by specialty (obstetrics-gynecology, pediatrics or family practice), discipline (physician, nurse, physician assistant, or social worker) and characteristics of the user's patient population (race/ethnicity, rural region, adolescents). Four program formats are available including web-based training, in-person half-day training, in-person grand rounds or full-day "train the trainer" Sessions.
  • Moms' Mental Health Matters. This is a National Institutes of Health initiative that aims to raise awareness among pregnant and postpartum mothers, their families, and health care providers about depression and anxiety that occurs during pregnancy or after the baby is born.
  • Translating Screening and Management of Postpartum Depression (TRIPPD) study. Conducted from 2005 through 2010, the TRIPPD was designed to assess the impact of a universal PPD screening and follow-up management program on patient-oriented outcomes associated with PPD; on practice-based process measures associated with PPD; and to explore the impact of practice characteristics on the translation of research regarding a PPD screening and follow-up management program. They concluded that postpartum depression screening is feasible in primary care practices, and for most women, the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) and Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9) scores were concordant.
  • Depression in Mothers: More than the Blues: A Toolkit for Family Service Providers. This toolkit was prepared for the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. It is designed for community-based providers and contains background information, ideas for helping mothers who are suffering from depression, and resources and handouts for mothers.
  • Universal Guidelines for Implementing Universal Postpartum Depression Screening in Well Child Checks. This guide, developed by the Minnesota Department of Health, provides rationale for maternal depression screening, tools to implement screening protocols, suggested scripts for talking with mothers about screening and referrals, and screening tools.
  • A Comprehensive Approach for Community-Based Programs to address Intimate Partner Violence and Perinatal Depression. This toolkit was produced for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Health Resources and Services Administration by Social Solutions International, Inc. The goal of the toolkit is to highlight innovative state and community-based strategies, and provide a resource that assists community-based organizations with addressing the intersection of intimate partner violence and perinatal depression. The target audience is community-based organizations working with women, children and families.
  • Joint Recommendations for Management of Prenatal Depression. This is the first joint recommendation produced in 2009 by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) and the American Psychiatric Association (APA) for the treatment of women with maternal depression during pregnancy. ACOG Press Release. Journal Article
  • Information for Clinicians on Antidepressants during Pregnancy and Breastfeeding. The University of Illinois at Chicago Perinatal Mental Health Project has a resource for clinicians that summarizes research on antidepressants in pregnancy and breastfeeding.
  • LactMed Drugs and Lactation Database. An additional resource is the U.S. National Library of Medicine's drugs and lactation database LactMed, a peer-reviewed and fully referenced database of drugs and their impact on breastfeeding women. Among the data included are maternal and infant levels of drugs, possible effects on breastfed infants and alternate drugs to consider.
  • Identifying and Treating Maternal Depression: Strategies and Considerations for Health Plans (NIHCM Brief 2010). This paper was produced with the support of the Maternal and Child Health Bureau, United States Department of Health and Human Services, and summarizes maternal depression – types, symptoms, prevalence, screening tools, recommendations, treatment, and care.

For Women and Families

There are a number of excellent resources designed specifically for women and their families. Providers are encouraged to share these resources with their clients and patients to help them learn more about maternal depression and to reinforce clinical follow up recommendations.

  • Depression Among Women of Reproductive Age. These web pages developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) were written specifically for women and their families and other members of their support systems. Includes practical, easy-to-read information in an engaging format. Also includes checklists and specific activities to guide individuals through key steps including making appointments, talking with providers, and providing support to family members.
  • Women and Depression: Discovering Hope. Developed by the National Institute of Mental Health. This information is presented in web-based format or a printable 30-page booklet. Includes sections on self-care and how to help a friend or relative with depression.
  • Postpartum Support International: This group's purpose is to increase maternal depression awareness among public and professional communities. They provide a resource for women, family, friends and health care providers on maternal depression:
    Phone: 800-944-4PPD (800-944-4773). For information on treatment, support groups and resources in the United States and 25 countries.
  • The Postpartum Resource Center of New York, Inc.: This nonprofit organization promotes maternal depression awareness in New York State, and provides resources for parents, families, health care providers, and communities to help address mental health and parenting with psychiatric disabilities. They also provide services, training and support for women and families dealing with or who are at risk for prenatal or postpartum depression.