Research Article
Volume 5 Issue 11 - 2021
A Review of Progress and Challenges of Antenatal Psychosocial Assessment for Decreasing Perinatal Mental Health Morbidity
Shafi U Bhuiyan1,2*, Housne Begum2,3, Princila Mukoko2, Mourin Moyen2, Ranin Mohammed2, Abhishek Saxena2, Ajay S Praveen2 and Moontaseer Rahman2
1University of Toronto, Canada
2Ryerson University, Canada
3McMaster University, Canada
*Corresponding Author: Shafi U Bhuiyan, University of Toronto, Canada.
Received: September 21, 2021; Published: October 18, 2021


Introduction: Although depression screening has been recommended in clinical practice guidelines, there are debates regarding the benefits of routine screening during the perinatal period. This narrative review aims to inform this debate by synthesizing evidence related to the overall benefit of antenatal psychosocial assessment programs in terms of engagement with appropriate mental health services, focusing on women’s acceptability of screening, and perceived barriers that may hinder the implementation of screening during obstetric care.

Methods: Four electronic databases, PubMed/MEDLINE, EMBASE (Ovid), CINAHL/EBSCO, Scopus, and PsycINFO/EBSCO, were searched for studies published between 2016 and 2021. Studies included presented findings relating to referral to or mental health service use due to participation in an antenatal assessment program. Studies that determined perceived barriers or facilitators that may impact the implementation of antenatal psychosocial assessment were also included.

Results: Overall, three out of ten studies showed that the proportion of women who engaged with perinatal mental health services after screening varied, with two studies reporting rates of 40.0% and 47.0%. Only one study reported that antenatal mental health screening effectively increased women’s engagement with mental health services. Three studies reported time constraints as one of the main barriers to screening. One study identified factors associated with increased odds of women not fully disclosing their mental health concerns during screening and a randomized controlled trial showed that more women preferred using a tablet over a paper-based survey questionnaire to answer questions on mental health (46.0% versus 29.2%).

Conclusion: Although attempts have been made to address issues on antenatal psychosocial assessment, there are still gaps to cover in this area. Little is known about the progress achieved in antenatal mental assessment to inform healthcare policymakers of required changes to decrease perinatal mental health morbidity.

Keywords: Antenatal Psychosocial Assessment; Antenatal Psychosocial Screening; Anxiety; Depression; Perinatal Psychosocial Assessment; Mental Health


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Citation: Shafi U Bhuiyan., et al. “A Review of Progress and Challenges of Antenatal Psychosocial Assessment for Decreasing Perinatal Mental Health Morbidity”. EC Emergency Medicine and Critical Care 5.11 (2021): 07-16.

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