Perinatal anxiety and depression affects one in six women (beyondblue.org.au). All women, including those who choose to access private healthcare should have access to perinatal anxiety and depression screening.
The Mater has a developed a Pre-Admission Midwife Appointment Program which aims to:
- Give all women access to a free of charge, 45-minute appointment with a specially trained midwife in the third trimester of pregnancy.
- Opportunity for women to become familiar with the hospital and the midwives
- Identify appropriate ‘flags’ and onward referrals,
Anxiety/depression is diagnosable, common and does not discriminate. The good news is that it is treatable. As it is well known, prevention is always better than cure, so early prevention and detection of these conditions is vital. The Mater’s Pre-Admission Midwife Appointment Program focuses on a woman’s emotional wellbeing to address this including:
- Screening for depression and anxiety and associated risk factors,
- Domestic violence screening,
- Promoting self-awareness of emotional wellbeing, and
- Validation and assistance with concerns or social stresses in the woman’s life.
This new program enables us to provide holistic multi-disciplinary care and offer support right through from the pregnancy, the birth of their baby and into the postnatal period. It encourages each area of the maternity unit to communicate to provide optimal and transparent patient care.