Authors:Kari Glavin, RN, MScN, PhD Student, Associate Professor, Department of Nursing Research, Diakonova University College; Lars Smith, PhD, Professor, National Network for the Study of Infant Mental Health and Institute of Psychology, University of Oslo; Ragnhild Sørum, MSc, Statistician, The Cancer Registry of Norway; Bodil Ellefsen, PhD, Professor, Institute of Nursing and Health Sciences, University of Oslo, Oslo, Norway.
Aim. To investigate the effect of a redesigned follow-up care programme on prevention and treatment of postpartum depression. Background. Postpartum depression may have negative consequences on child development, maternal health and the relationship between parents. Early identification and treatment might prevent longer-term depression. Design. A quasi-experimental post-test design with non-equivalent groups. Method. The study population was postpartum women with a live-born child, residing in one of two municipalities in Norway. A total of 2247 women were enrolled: 1806 in the experimental municipality and 441 in the comparison municipality. Public health nurses (26) in the experimental municipality were trained to identify postpartum depression using the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale and clinical assessment and to provide supportive counselling. Measurements. The Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale at six weeks, three, six and 12 months postpartum and the Parenting Stress Index at 12 months postpartum. Results. The redesigned postpartum care programme yielded a significant group difference in the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale score at six weeks (p