Perinatal Psychiatry Service
What Does Our Service Do?
We offer treatment and support to women across Leicestershire who develop severe mental illnesses during pregnancy and after delivery (until their babies are nine months old). We assess them in outpatient clinics that are held within maternity settings to minimise stigma. Our team nurses support these women in the community. If a mother is severely ill, she has the option of admission to a specialist inpatient Mother and Baby unit in Bradgate unit along with her baby. This prevents separation from her baby and helps bonding. Our service is also involved in teaching and research to improve awareness in perinatal mental health.
How Does Our Service Work?
Referrals are discussed at a weekly team meeting. If they are accepted as appropriate, the team decides whether the woman needs a clinic appointment with a doctor or needs to be seen at home by a specialist nurse. Initial outpatient clinic assessments take about an hour. If needed, she is subsequently seen for follow-up appointments in clinic. A woman with very severe illness such as puerperal psychosis or severe depression may need hospital admission. Separation from her baby is avoided by admission to the Mother and Baby unit rather than to a general psychiatry ward. Nursing staff will support her with caring for her baby and building her confidence in being a mother until she is well enough to be discharged. The perinatal team will continue to support her after discharge.
Our service has a consultant and 2 community nurses. We receive about 350 referrals each year from GPs, obstetricians, midwives, general psychiatrists and health visitors. On the Mother and Baby unit there are general ward staff who have a special interest in caring for perinatal illness.
We deliver our service from:
- Out patient clinics: held in maternity units in Leicester Royal Infirmary and Leicester General Hospital
- Community: city and county
- Mother and Baby unit (patients from Leicestershire and out of area)
How Can You Access Our Service?
To access our service you can:
- Speak to your GP
- Speak to your obstetrician, midwife or health visitor
Self- referral is not available currently
0116 225 6218
- Sure Start groups (e.g. Mums in Mind, Postnatal depression groups)
- Home Start
Carer Support Groups
How Did We Do?
If you have any comments or queries about our service then please complete our online questionnaire and let us know how we are doing.