February Named Maternal Mental Health Month

Feb 15, 2021

Credit Early Childhood Alliance

February is declared Maternal Mental Health Month. State legislators and Utah’s First Lady Abby Cox will hold a kick-off Zoom meeting on Wednesday at noon.

Utah Governor Spencer Cox has established February as Maternal Mental Health Month. Dignitaries, health experts, and mothers who have struggled with mental health challenges will participate in the meeting, emphasizing building awareness in mental health wellness for expecting and new mothers.

First Lady Abby Cox and legislators will discuss the importance of statewide maternal mental health efforts, including recent legislation and state data showing the frequency of depression in mothers with babies or those expecting babies.

The report published by the Utah Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring System, known as PRAMS, showed 43% of Utahn’s with a recent live birth were affected by depression or anxiety.

The data suggest that screening expecting, and new mothers are important and that only 44% of PRAMS participants had been screened before pregnancy.

According to the data, a Utah referral system has helped thousands of struggling mothers get care or access to services. The referral system has raised awareness of the emotional challenges women face in preparing for motherhood.

You can find the link to the Utah maternal mental health awareness resource on here. The website helps mothers locate and connect with appropriate caregivers or services.

The Zoom event is Wednesday, February 17, at noon. Registering in advance is required, and you can find a link here.

The coalition sponsoring this event includes a broad range of public and private organizations listed on the KPCW.org website. Park City Community Foundation’s Early Childhood Alliance is one of those supporting the effort.

KPCW reports on issues affecting children age 0 through three years old are brought to you by the early childhood fund at the Park City Community Foundation. For more information, go to earlychildhoodalliance.net  List of Organizers:The YWCA Utah, Voices for Utah Children, the Utah Department of Health including the maternal Mental Health Committee of the Utah Women and Newborns Quality Collaborative, American Academy of Pediatrics, Utah Chapter, Postpartum Support International Utah Chapter, Utah Division of Substance Abuse and Mental Health, Emily Effect, the Early Childhood Alliance, the University of Utah and Intermountain Healthcare, among many others.