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ASPHN Releases New Brief Titled "Supporting Maternal Mental Health in Public Health Nutrition Practice"

Every year, more than 400,000 infants are born to mothers who are depressed, making perinatal depression the most underdiagnosed obstetric complication in America.* ASPHN’s new brief, "Supporting Maternal Mental Health In Public Health Nutrition Practice," addresses how public health nutritionists (PHNs) can strategically and positively influence the outcomes of maternal mental health.

The 17-page document provides valuable insight into maternal depression and the potentially harmful effects it can have on mothers, families and children. The brief highlights programs that use integrated maternal mental health screening and training to help those at risk, and offers resources that can be used to screen and treat maternal depression.

According to the document’s author, Shana Patterson, “We know that healthy women make healthy mothers. Public health nutritionists play a vital role in overall maternal health by improving nutrition, decreasing disease. Addressing maternal mental health is a logical next step, and our brief outlines how PHNs can partner with other mental health professionals to take a more active role.“ 

"Supporting Maternal Mental Health in Public Health Nutrition Practice" can be obtained from ASPHN’s website. For more information or questions about the brief, please contact Shana Patterson, RDN at shana@asphn.org or 814 255-2829 ext. 708.

Founded in 1952, ASPHN is a non-profit membership organization that provides state and national leadership on food and nutrition policy, programs and services aimed at improving the health of our population. ASPHN’s membership is composed of more than 300 public health nutritionists located throughout all 50 states, the District of Columbia and five U.S. territories. ASPHN's vision is healthy eating and active living for everyone. You can find ASPHN on the web at www.asphn.org and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/asphn.

*American Academy of Pediatrics, Clinical Report—Incorporating Recognition and Management of Perinatal and Postpartum Depression Into Pediatric Practice

The product described in this release is supported in part by the Health Resources and Services Administration, Maternal and Child Health Bureau (contract #HHSH250201300026C).