New maternal mental health service helps Kiwi mums

Found in: News / News
Date: 21 July 2017
New maternal mental health service helps Kiwi mums

4 May, 2015

Having a baby is an exciting and challenging time for women, but for some it can become a crippling nightmare, as reporter Charlotte Bellis finds out on 60 Minutes.

“In the weeks and months after giving birth, some mothers become bound by mental illness and it’s not an isolated problem ‒ at least 15% of New Zealand women experience postnatal depression,” Charlotte says.

In 2013 the government allocated an extra $18.2 million into maternal mental health services in the North Island. The programme is targeting 650 mothers and babies each year and starting a revolution in care.

The money has largely been channelled to those needing acute care with a new Mothers and Babies unit at Starship Hospital, expanded respite care facilities in the region and offered more in-home care for mothers.

Charlotte got exclusive access to these new facilities to see if they're effective and whether they'll be expanded nationwide.

She also talks to Louise Clark and Deborah Clark, pictured, (not related) for a personal perspective on postnatal depression and the benefits of the new service.

This story aired on Prime TV, Monday 4 May @ 8.30pm and was supported by a Like Minds, Like Mine NZ Mental Health Media Grant sponsored by the Frozen Funds Charitable Trust. Watch A Mother's Anguish now.