Community Mental Health Provider Reluctance to Provide Pharmacotherapy May Be a Barrier to Addressing Perinatal Depression: A Preliminary Study

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Psychiatry; Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology; Department of Family Medicine and Community Health

Publication Date


Document Type



Attitude of Health Personnel; Community Health Services; Depression, Postpartum; Depressive Disorder; Community Mental Health Services; Community Mental Health Centers; Perinatal Care; Drug Therapy


Maternal and Child Health | Mental and Social Health | Obstetrics and Gynecology | Psychiatric and Mental Health | Psychiatry | Psychiatry and Psychology | Women's Health


This is the first study evaluating obstetrics and gynecology (OB/Gyn) provider and staff perceptions of barriers to accessing pharmacotherapy for perinatal depression outside the obstetric setting. Four, 90 min focus groups were conducted with OB/Gyn physicians, advance practice nurses, and support and nursing staff (n = 28). Data were analyzed with a grounded theory approach. Participants perceived that community mental health providers and pharmacists often do not want to participate in pharmacotherapy for perinatal women. Participants believed the solution is training for community mental health providers in the risks and benefits of pharmacotherapy for perinatal depression and improved communication between OB/Gyn's and community mental health providers. Community mental health provider and pharmacist reluctance to provide pharmacotherapy hinders OB/Gyn's perceived ability to address perinatal depression. Community mental health provider and pharmacist training are needed to mitigate precipitous discontinuation of treatment and to improve access to pharmacotherapy for perinatal women.


UMCCTS funding

DOI of Published Version



Byatt N, Biebel K, Debordes-Jackson G, Lundquist RS, Moore Simas TA, Weinreb L, Ziedonis D. Community mental health provider reluctance to provide pharmacotherapy may be a barrier to addressing perinatal depression: a preliminary study. Psychiatr Q. 2013 Jun;84(2):169-74. doi:10.1007/s11126-012-9236-0. Link to article on publisher's site

Journal/Book/Conference Title

The Psychiatric quarterly

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed

PubMed ID