tem factors that may contribute to perinatal depression. One such study explores how the health-seeking and resilient behaviors of recent immigrants coping with maternal depression compare with the experiences of the majority population (Huang, 2007). This study will also use national survey data to explore the role of selected social influences as moderators or mediators of maternal depression.

MCHB is addressing the need to increase the number of individuals trained to provide mental health services for people with depression, and in particular peripartum depression, by means of investigators and programs that purport to achieve that goal. For example, a grant was awarded to a program administered by the School of Public Health at the University of California, Berkeley that aimed to increase the capacity to screen, assess, and treat mental health disorders in peripartum women. The program organized convening activities of relevant leaders and stakeholders to develop and evaluate a continuing educational curriculum to be offered to relevant health professionals (Guendelman, 2008). MCHB has also awarded grants to institutions that increase the competence of physicians to render depression-related services to all adults, regardless of gender (Bureau of Health Professions, n.d.).

National Institutes of Health

Several institutes of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), most notably the National Institute of Mental Health, sponsor research studies investigating biological and environmental factors associated with maternal, postpartum, and generalized forms of adult depression. A noteworthy example, as described in Chapter 7, includes an analysis of the STAR*D findings, which reported in 2006 that when women treated for depression become symptom-free, their children are less likely to be diagnosed with depression (Weissman et al., 2006). The study alerts health professionals and patients to the need for vigorous identification and treatment of depressed mothers as well as the evaluation of their children for symptoms.

At present, no systematic effort is available to coordinate the findings from NIH studies about parental depression or to integrate these research findings into programmatic and state-based programs in HRSA, AHRQ, CDC, or the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration

SAMHSA is tasked with setting national mental health policy, conducting translational research, and delivering mental health services. Its National Mental Health Information Center provides access to multiple



The National Academies | 500 Fifth St. N.W. | Washington, D.C. 20001
Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.
Terms of Use and Privacy Statement