During the pandemic, perinatal depression surged. However, many mental health professionals are overwhelmed and unable to accept new clients.
The good news comes from a new Northwestern medical study that found that paraprofessors resulted in similar depressive symptom relief as mental health professionals when providing group-based cognitive-behavioral therapy interventions.
The findings are based on a national project called Mothers & Babies that adds home care visits by trained general health professionals to low-income pregnant women. Mothers and babies are interventions using cognitive-behavioral therapy aimed at reducing stress and improving mood in pregnant women and new mothers.
However, during the pandemic, direct home visits are no longer possible, so the program has recently focused virtually on providing treatment to pregnant women.
The virtual response to mothers and babies provided was incredibly positive from providers and clients. The need for mental health services is so high in this COVID environment that life-stressed healthcare providers and perinatal women really value the ability to receive support in remote areas. “
Darius Tandon, Chief Author and Associate Professor of Medical and Social Sciences, Northwestern University School of Medicine, Fineberg School of Medicine
One in five women develops postpartum depression, and both mothers and children are adversely affected by postpartum depression.
“Preventing postpartum depression before it begins is important in promoting the health and well-being of new mothers and their children,” said Tandon.
“With proper training and supervision, the average healthcare professional can do a good job,” said Tandon. “You don’t have to rely on mental health professionals. You can go another way.”
The paper will be published on March 3rd Archive of women’s mental health..
This is the first study of the knowledge of researchers who used regular home visitors to provide preventive interventions for postpartum depression. Previous studies using amateur healthcare professionals have focused on the treatment of postpartum depression.
Researchers say there is growing interest in the concept of “task shifts”, or the transition of care from more specialized (eg, mental health professionals) to less specialized healthcare professionals.
“This study suggests that it is possible to’task shift’to paraprofessional home visitors to provide interventions aimed at preventing postpartum depression,” Feinberg’s community health. Tandon, who is also the co-director of the center, said. Not only is there a shortage of mental health professionals available in many communities, but there are also stigma associated with meeting “official” mental health providers. “
Using paraprofessional home visitors rather than expensive mental health professionals can minimize the costs associated with providing interventions, he said.
Cognitive behavioral therapy can reduce stress and improve the mood of pregnant women
Source link Cognitive behavioral therapy can reduce stress and improve the mood of pregnant women