Here at the East and North Hertfordshire NHS Trust, we recognise the impact poor perinatal mental health can have on your pregnancy and early parenting. At least one in five women will experience mental illness within the perinatal period. As you can see this is very common, it is also non-discriminatory in that it can affect anyone, though those with historic or current mental illness are at a greater risk of deterioration and/or relapse. It is very important to be open and honest about your mental health and speak with your midwife, health visitor or GP in order to gain the right support.
Our aim is to provide joined up support for women and their families who are experiencing mental illness. Our perinatal mental health midwives provide a specialist service whereby they are a point of contact for those women requiring extra support, they are a liaison between maternity and psychiatric services and they provide knowledge and resources for both staff and women.
Additionally, the perinatal mental health midwives are currently running a pilot clinic, in which qualifying women and their partners (if they wish) work together with the perinatal mental health midwives to develop birth plans. Women report that these plans help relieve their anxiety(ies) surrounding delivery and coming into the hospital. Additionally, they may work with women identified by the Community Perinatal Team, the psychiatric team from Hertfordshire Partnership Foundation Trust or from joint psychiatry and obstetric consultant clinics held within the trust.
We recognise that not everyone is confident or comfortable discussing their mental wellbeing; please be assured, we always aim to provide compassionate, non-judgemental, supportive and evidence based working practices. Our vision is for a woman’s mental wellbeing to be regarded with equal consideration as her physical wellbeing.
Perinatal mental health midwives
Monday to Thursday 08.00-16.30
Monday to Friday 08.00-16.00
Please visit our leaflet using the following QR code for more information:
Hertfordshire Community Perinatal Team – 03001240939
Cambridgeshire Community Perinatal Team – 08009520060
Bedfordshire Community Perinatal Team – 01234263642
Out of hours Mental Health Team – 08006444101
Samaritans – 116 123
NHS 111, option 2