postpartum depression clinicThey already know this, because I talk to them quite a bit, but I couldn’t be more proud of or excited for the wonderful people at the University of North Carolina (UNC) for opening the country’s first freestanding perinatal inpatient psychiatry unit.  Hooray! Bravo! Yippee!!!!!  What a gift for moms with postpartum depression.

There are other specialized clinics and treatment programs, of course, but this is the first separate unit solely for mothers who need to be hospitalized for perinatal mood and anxiety disorders like severe postpartum depression or postpartum psychosis.  In most other places, a woman requiring inpatient treatment will be hospitalized with all other psychiatric patients, without any special services or tools that support her needs as a new mother.

As reported by in a story by Ann Hepperman on NPR, Dr. Samantha Meltzer-Brody says “… everything in the new ward is geared to help women with postpartum depression. There are breast pumps and comfortable rocking chairs, individual therapy and family therapy. Babies will have extended visiting hours so that mom and child can create a routine, even while mom is hospitalized. It’s the kind of treatment, she says, these women should expect.”

Thank you thank you thank you to Dr. David Rubinow, Dr. Samantha Meltzer-Brody, Chris Raines and the rest of the wonderful UNC staff!!  I hope your program becomes the model for other such sorely-needed clinics for women with postpartum depression in this country.  Many congratulations!!

To learn more, please visit the UNC Center for Women’s Mood Disorders.

photo credit: © Lorelyn Medina – Fotolia