The March 2009 issue of Maternal Child Health Journal offers a study from researchers at George Washington University and Johns Hopkins that examined using the Internet to screen for postpartum depression symtpoms. The Postpartum Depression Screening Scale (PDSS) and the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale were used and then compared with the results of screens administered in person.
The study found thatahigher proportion of Hispanic and Asian women participated on the Internet compared to the in-person study. (Interesting!) It also found that the PDSS had excellent "internal consistencies and construct validity", which I think means it was very effective no matter how it was administered. The Internet sample also reported more risk for major postpartum depression (PPD) compared to the community sample (23% vs. 12%). They concluded that the Internet is a viable and feasible tool to screen for PPD.
I just love this place! I'll be adding this study to the speech I give on how women with perinatal mood and anxiety disorders use the Internet. If you're interested in havingme speak at your event, let me know! (Plug. Plug. Plug.)