Perinatal Mental Health Care In The United States: An Overview Of Policies And Programs

Adrienne Griffen, Lynne McIntyre, Jamie Zahlaway Belsito, Joy Burkhard, Wendy Davis, Mary Kimmel, Alison Stuebe, Crystal Clark, Samantha Meltzer-Brody

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


In the United States, mental health conditions are the most common complications of pregnancy and childbirth, and suicide and overdose combined are the leading cause of death for new mothers. Although awareness of and action on perinatal mental health is increasing, significant gaps remain. Screening and treatment are widely recommended but unevenly implemented, and policies and funding do not adequately support the mental health of childbearing people. As a result, treatable perinatal mental health conditions can have long-term, multigenerational negative consequences. This article provides an overview of the perinatal mental health landscape in the United States by identifying serious gaps in screening, education, and treatment; describing recent federal and state policy efforts; highlighting successful models of care; and offering recommendations for robust and integrated perinatal mental health care.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1543-1550
Number of pages8
JournalHealth affairs (Project Hope)
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 1 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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