The Suffolk Perinatal Service is run by a consultant psychiatrist, two senior nurses and an administrator, who provide a range of support and interventions to women with severe mental illness during pregancy and for up to a year following the birth of their child.
"One in five mothers suffer from depression, anxiety or in some cases psychosis during pregnancy or in the first year after childbirth" - according to 'NHS Five Year Forward View for Mental Health' report, February 2016.
Our specialist service offers targeted help to new mums in East and West Suffolk with these complex mental health issues.
Age of service: Young mums and women of all child-bearing ages.
The conditions we treat: This service offers help to women during pre-conception, pregnancy and up to a year of birth, who are struggling with a current or historic mental health condition, which includes severe: Post-natal depression, Bipolar Disorder, Psychosis, Anxiety or OCD.
What to expect from us: An assessment is made to identify how we can support you and determine what treatment is needed based on the severity of your condition. A perinatal or post-natal care plan is then put into place to work with you to support your needs. You will be seen by our Perinatal Clinical Nurse Specialists and an obstetrician, and part of your care may include support from a health visitor, children's centre, midwife, social worker, and non statoratury agencies, so that we can work together to provide joined-up care to support you and your family throughout your treatment, and can go on to enjoy a healthy happy life with your new baby.
How we support carers, including friends and family: As mentioned, as part of your care plan we identify support networks through people who are involved with you and your family.
Our team also work closely with colleagues within the community who provide perinatal care, providing training to help them to identify and support mothers who may be at risk of presenting with mental health difficulties.
As well as caring for people with conditions such as post-natal depression, we also offer pre-conception counselling to women who already have a mental health condition.
How do I access this service: To access our service you must be see your GP or a health professional who can refer you to the NSFT Access and Assessment Team - see referral section below for more details.