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The new Postnatal Care Policy for the Western Cape has recently been ratified by the Head of Health, Dr Engelbrecht, and a circular distributed province-wide instructing ‘immediate implementation’.

The PMHP contributed substantially to this policy which now includes a requirement for screening, referral and adequate follow up of mothers with depression, anxiety, psychosis and substance use problems. The mental health screening tool on the clinic checklist includes the brief tool validated by PMHP at our Hanover Park research project.

The accompanying policy guideline document for health workers includes large sections written by PMHP, pertaining to maternal mental health: risks, signs, symptoms, detection and management. 

Screening advisory

Screening is the entry point to mental health care. We recently produced an advisory for primary level screening of mothers for depression, anxiety and suicidal ideation and behaviour in South Africa. When health providers are not necessarily skilled in other forms of detection and when disorders are not clinically obvious, brief screening is a critical step towards providing mental health support for vulnerable women. Read the recommendations on our website.

PMHP resources

Publishing our findings

Highlights of our latest publications:

Antenatal depression and adversity in urban South Africa - Journal of Affective Disorders

Integrating mental health into South Africa’ s health system : current status and way forward - South African Health Review, 2016, Chapter 13

Breastfeeding in South Africa : are we making progress? - South African Health Review, 2016, Chapter 10

PMHP publications

Community training 

We were invited to present a workshop to the Eden district’s Mental Health Education and Networking Drive (MEND) near George.

Nearly 50 community based workers, health and social development officials and NGO staff actively participated in the capacity building session.

New networks were established for the case management and referrals of mothers with mental illness in this rural setting. 

 

PMHP training
Special thanks to our Board of Advisors
for a very productive meeting!
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