Screening for Depression in Pregnancy and the Postpartum Period

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Abstract

Depression in pregnancy and the postpartum period is common, burdensome, and underrecognized. Guidelines from multiple organizations support routine screening once during pregnancy and again in the postpartum period. A variety of validated patient questionnaires are effective screening tools for pregnant and postpartum women. Universal screening programs can successfully overcome patient, clinician, and system barriers and reduce the burden of disease. Novel approaches include postpartum screening in pediatric settings and the use of e-screening to optimize privacy and facilitate scoring and interpretation. Implementation of universal screening should be a priority for all health systems providing obstetrical care.

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