Patient's views on depression care in obstetric settings: how do they compare to the views of perinatal health care professionals

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Psychiatry

Publication Date


Document Type



Adult; Ambulatory Care; *Attitude of Health Personnel; *Attitude to Health; Depression, Postpartum; Depressive Disorder; Female; Focus Groups; Humans; Obstetrics; *Patient Acceptance of Health Care; Pregnancy; Pregnancy Complications; Social Stigma; Young Adult


Maternal and Child Health | Mental and Social Health | Mental Disorders | Obstetrics and Gynecology | Psychiatry | Translational Medical Research | Women's Health


OBJECTIVES: The objectives were to examine patients' perspectives on patient-, provider- and systems-level barriers and facilitators to addressing perinatal depression in outpatient obstetric settings. We also compare the views of patients and perinatal health care professionals.

METHOD: Four 90-min focus groups were conducted with women 3-36 months after delivery (n=27) who experienced symptoms of perinatal depression, anxiety or emotional distress. Focus groups were transcribed, and resulting data were analyzed using a grounded theory approach.

RESULTS: Barriers to addressing perinatal depression included fear of stigma and loss of parental rights, negative experiences with perinatal health care providers and lack of depression management knowledge/skills among professionals. Facilitators included psychoeducation, peer support and training for professionals.

CONCLUSIONS: Patients perceive many multilevel barriers to treatment that are similar to those found in our previous similar study of perinatal health care professionals' perspectives. However, patients and professionals do differ in their perceptions of one another. Interventions would need to close these gaps and include an empathic screening and referral process that facilitates discussion of mental health concerns. Interventions should leverage strategies identified by both patients and professionals, including empowering both via education, resources and access to varied mental health care options.


UMCCTS funding

DOI of Published Version



Byatt N, Biebel K, Friedman L, Debordes-Jackson G, Ziedonis D, Pbert L. Patient's views on depression care in obstetric settings: how do they compare to the views of perinatal health care professionals? Gen Hosp Psychiatry. 2013 Nov-Dec;35(6):598-604. doi:10.1016/j.genhosppsych.2013.07.011. Link to article on publisher's site

Journal/Book/Conference Title

General hospital psychiatry

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed

PubMed ID