In early 2016, the US Preventative Services Task Force updated its previous recommendation that postpartum and pregnant women should be screened for depression. Now, the USPSTF recommends all adults undergo routine depression screening. In this brief question and answer session, Marla Ahlgrimm explains why this new guideline is so important for women.
Q: How are pregnant and postpartum women screened for depression?
Marla Ahlgrimm: Current screening practices typically include a questionnaire given to a woman during her baby’s routine well visit. This survey asks patients to identify how often and to what level specific negative emotions affect their day-to-day interactions. This screening method will continue and hopefully lead to measurable standards of follow-up mental health care.