NHS England is developing Maternal Mental Health Hubs across the country as part of their commitment to increasing access to psychological support for women before, during and after pregnancy as part of the NHS Long Term Plan.
Part of the county’s Better Births programme, Lincolnshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (LPFT) in partnership with United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust (ULHT), will use this new investment to introduce new countywide support for women who have experienced birth trauma or loss, as well as expectant mothers who have a fear of labour known as Tokophobia.
Forming part of the existing Perinatal Mental Health Service, the hub will offer women psychological support from a range of skilled staff and will be supported by a specialist mental health midwife.
As well as offering psychological therapies for new and expectant mothers, the clinics will also provide training for maternity staff and midwives, further developing the maternal mental health offer in Lincolnshire.
Jodie Lindley, Service Manager for LPFT Adult Community Mental Health Services, said: “Pregnancy and motherhood are unique experiences and perinatal mental health problems, occurring during pregnancy or in the 24 months following the birth of a child, are likely to affect up to one in four women.
“Our Maternal Mental Health Hub will allow us to provide further specialist support across the county, improving quality of care and outcomes for many women.”
Libby Grooby, Head of Midwifery at United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust (ULHT), said: “The development of this service is welcomed and ULHT are delighted to be working with our system partners to improve the services we offer to our women who need additional support with their mental health.”
Sue Jarvis from Better Births Lincolnshire, said: “The expansion of services outlined builds on existing work to improve perinatal mental health care, and is a welcome step towards realising the ambitions set out in the NHS Long Term Plan. We have worked in collaboration with the team to support women and their families across the county.”
It is hoped that the extended service will be available from the winter of 2021 following the recruitment of new staff.
To access NHS Perinatal Mental Health Services in Lincolnshire, you can talk to your GP, Midwife or Health Visitor. To read more about Better Births Lincolnshire, visit www.betterbirthlincolnshire.co.uk