School of Nursing


Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)


Vickie Moore


Perinatal Depression (PD), PD screening, PD screening schedule, PD screening algorithm


Medicine and Health Sciences | Nursing


Within the health care industry, mental illness has become a growing national concern, especially within the realm of obstetric care. As a vulnerable population, pregnant and postpartum women require appropriate screening and treatment for depression as warranted. Within the United States, there is an increasing concern around undiagnosed and untreated perinatal depression because of the lack of adequate screening and treatment plans. Perinatal depression that remains unrecognized contributes not only to long-lasting effects on the women, but also to adverse developmental effects in infants and an overall burden on the family unit. In addition, perinatal depression is associated with various pregnancy complications and unfavorable maternal and fetal outcomes. The purpose of this integrative review is to identify the most effective screening schedule for early detection of perinatal depression to hasten proper mental health evaluation and treatment. Various screening algorithms were studied to reveal the most effective strategy for diagnosing and continuous monitoring of perinatal depression. This integrative review discovered inconsistent perinatal depression screening with inadequate follow-up in the case of positive screening cases within maternal health care. Further discussion regarding perinatal depression screening practices and statistical evidence supporting various screening algorithms are also provided.

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