England: new mental health hubs for new, expectant or bereaved mothers

21 May 2021

Thousands of new, expectant or bereaved mothers will receive help and support for mental health problems through ‘dedicated hubs’ being set up across the country, NHS England has announced.

By the end of 2021/22, around 6000 women are expected to receive care and treatment for a wide range of mental health issues, including a severe fear of childbirth and post-traumatic stress disorder after giving birth.

The 26 hubs have been designed to bring together maternity services, reproductive health and psychological therapy under one roof as part of the NHS Long-term plan to increase access to psychological support.

Around five years ago, 40% of the country had no access to specialist perinatal mental health care, NHS England said. The clinics will also provide training for maternity staff and midwives.

Of the 26 sites, 10 are due to open ‘within months’, with the remainder to start seeing mothers by April 2022. Every area should have one by April 2024.

Emily Slater, CEO of the Maternal Mental Health Alliance, said: ‘These new services will enable more women than ever to access vital perinatal mental health care.

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