Navigation Links
New hospital guidelines to help mothers at risk of postpartum depression

Although 13 percent of new mothers experience postpartum depression (PPD) in the first year after childbirth, few women recognize the symptoms and seldom discuss their feelings with a health care provider. University of Louisville Hospital (ULH) hopes to change this statistic through a new policy to guide hospital-based perinatal nurses in caring for women with risk of PPD.

M. Cynthia Logsdon, PhD, APRN, FAAN, professor, University of Louisville School of Nursing, and associate chief of nursing research, University of Louisville Hospital and the James Graham Brown Cancer Center, and her team created evidence-based practice guidelines using research recently published on-line in The American Journal of Maternal Child Nursing.

"The hospital policies and procedures are designed to provide perinatal nurses the tools they need to prepare new mothers so they are able to self-monitor for symptoms of depression and know what steps to take if they experience symptoms," Logsdon said.

According to Logsdon, most hospitals lack comprehensive perinatal patient PPD assessment, education and referral policies. Although professional organizations such as the Registered Nurses' Association of Ontario previously published a best practices guideline, the recommendations did not focus on the first few days following childbirth or nursing care while the new mother was hospitalized.

"Our recommendations for nursing practice of hospital-based perinatal nurses go beyond previous published guidelines," Logsdon said.

Logsdon and her team, Diane Eckert, BSN, RN, clinical manager, mother-baby unit, ULH, and Roselyn Tomasulo, RN, MSN, perinatal educator, collaborated with internationally-known researchers in the field to draft the article, Identification of Mothers at Risk for Postpartum Depression by Hospital Based Perinatal Nurses. A task force of clinical nurses was consulted to determine how to improve nursing practice at ULH. Implementation included identifying at-risk patients and referral sources; physician and staff education was another component.

"When many nurses enter the profession, they don't fully understand their critical role as patient educators," Tomasulo said. "We are helping our perinatal nurses feel more competent in their roles by offering inter-hospital on-line education and staff training."

During the obstetric patient admission process, ULH perinatal nurses now assess new mothers for PPD and suicide risk factors: low-income status, lack of social support and previous history of depression. If a patient is at risk, it is reported to the obstetrical physician. The evening before hospital discharge, all new mothers fill out a questionnaire that utilizes the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS). Mothers are asked questions such as whether they feel anxious or worried for no particular reason and whether they feel sad or miserable. The higher the score, the greater the risk for PPD.

The physician, social services worker and oncoming shift nurse are then informed. The nurse who administered the EPDS reviews the results of the depression screening with the patient and her support person. Patients also are informed about depression symptoms and what to do if they begin to feel hopeless.

New mothers go home with a list of community resources and physician referrals, so names and numbers are at their finger-tips in case they need to seek help. They're asked to retake the EPDS questionnaire about a week later after leaving the hospital to see if they're experiencing PPD symptoms.

"We hope our work will be seen as a model of good policy and can be considered by other hospitals and professional organizations," Logsdon said.

Contact: Julie Heflin
University of Louisville

Related medicine news :

1. Rare Drug-Resistant Bacteria Spotted in U.S. Hospital
2. Ethics should drive health policy reform, especially with physician-owned specialty hospitals
3. Hospitalization May Be Tipping Point for Alzheimers Decline
4. Dramatic Rise in Kids Hospitalized With High Blood Pressure: Study
5. Los Robles Hospital’s Annual Health Fair Attended by Khanna Institute
6. Hospital volume and surgeon specialty influence patient outcomes
7. Illnesses in Colorado childrens hospital prompts discovery of contaminated alcohol pads
8. 3-center study identifies main causes of unprofessional behavior among hospitalists
9. Noisy Wards Could Threaten Hospital Patients Health
10. Under pressure from Medicare, hospitals hold more seniors for observation
11. Many Suffer Leg, Lung Clots While Hospitalized: CDC
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... November 24, 2015 , ... New patients who wish to ... for dental implants at her Mississauga, ON practice. Dr. Williams has been ... placement of dental implants. , Missing teeth can lead to a variety of ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... November 25, 2015 , ... Catalent Pharma Solutions, the leading ... health and global clinical supply services, today announced that Dr. Christine Milligan, Global ... Asia Conference, to be held at the InterContinental Seoul COEX Hotel, Seoul, Republic ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... MA (PRWEB) , ... November 24, 2015 , ... ... announced that the organization will waive paid entry and parking fees at several ... Hingham, and Monument Mountain in Great Barrington in support of REI’s Black Friday ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... , ... November 24, 2015 , ... ... the United States to support their local poison centers through donations on Tuesday, ... #GivingTuesday: calls it “a day that inspires people to collaborate in improving ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... (PRWEB) , ... November 24, 2015 , ... Cold Shoulder , LLC launched their ... last week and hit their goal of $20,000 in under 10 hours. ... to bring the new PRO Weight Loss Vest to the market. , The PRO Vest ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/24/2015)... and VANCOUVER, Nov. 24, 2015 /PRNewswire/ - ESSA ... EPIX ) announced today that the first patient ... of EPI-506 as a treatment for metastatic castration-resistant prostate ... and Canada.  --> the ... In the Phase 1/2 clinical trial, ESSA intends ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... -- Sectra (STO: SECT B) announces that ... multi-year agreement to deploy Breast Imaging PACS in ... the Breast Center a future-proof platform capable of expanding with ... announces that Breast Center of Acadiana has entered ... PACS in its two freestanding imaging centers. This investment will ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... 24, 2015  Ascendant Solutions, Inc. (Pink Sheets: ASDS ... of Directors has declared a special 1 percent stock dividend ... payable December 14, 2015, to shareholders of record December 7, ... additional shares of common stock. --> ... a strong endorsement of our confidence in Ascendant,s growth strategy ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: