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Uncovering the Golden Veil: Applying the Evidence for Telephone Screening to Detect Early Postpartum Depression

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Postpartum depression (PPD) is often detected later than symptom onset, or even undetected, because of lack of prompt or adequate screening. An evidence-based PPD screening protocol using a telephone-based format within a primary care practice was developed to identify symptoms and initiate treatment between 2 and 3 weeks postpartum. The Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale was used, with positive screens referred for provider and support services, and then tracked for follow-through. Fifty-two percent of women screened positive. Sixty-four percent accepted both provider and support referrals, with 89% follow-through with provider referrals and 78% follow-through with support referrals. Outcomes support early screening for PPD using a telephone-based format to effectively identify symptoms and acceptance of referrals by participants.
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Keywords: evidence-based practice; maternal depression; perinatal depression; perinatal mental health; postpartum depression screening

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 1, 2016

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