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Perinatal mental health service

Our Community Perinatal Mental Health Service is a small highly specialised service providing a psychiatric liaison service to the maternity unit at St George's Hospital. 

It is also a consultation service to primary care in Wandsworth and Merton for the assessment, management or appropriate signposting of women with mental health disorders during pregnancy and post-partum.  It is also an internal specialist consultation service for all services within the five SW London boroughs served by the Trust, advising on prevention and management of serious mental disorders occurring in the context of childbirth.

Who is the service for?

This service is for women who live in Wandsworth and Merton or receiving their maternity care at St George’s Hospital. Women currently receiving care from the services provided by the Southwest London and St George’s Mental Health Trust in the boroughs of Kingston, Richmond and Sutton can also be referred internally to the service. Women who are either pregnant or in the first year following the birth of their baby and present with moderate to severe mental health problems or with high risk factors for perinatal mental health problems due to past history or family history are eligible for referral. Women with known history of mental illness on psychotropic medication are eligible for pre-conception counselling and advice.

Our team can assess and advise on the management of women who are in the perinatal period dealing with mental health problems, such as:

 

  • bipolar disorder
  • depression
  • schizophrenia
  • eating disorders
  • OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder)
  • anxiety disorders
  • personality disorders
  • puerperal or postpartum psychosis.

What we offer

  • Preconceptual advice, pregnancy and birth planning for women who have had a previous episode of mental illness
  • A consultation that may lead to a further assessment of risk and treatment options
  • Onward referral for psychological therapies
  • The shared development of a care plan that meets your personal needs
  • Planning for the postnatal period to promote wellness and prevent relapse
  • Advice in prescribing medication for mental health reasons during pregnancyand breast feeding eg anti-depressants
  • Information about other services.
  • Support for up to one year, if the problems start during pregnancy or during first six months postnatally.

Who is in the team?

Our team has specialist perinatal mental health nurse and a perinatal consultant psychiatrist. We also have access to psychological services and work closely with midwifery services and health visitors.

You can read more about our perinatal services here.