Acceptability of Routine Screening for Perinatal Depression
Janette Brooks, Edith Cowan University
Craig Speelman, Edith Cowan University
Computing, Health and Science
Psychology and Social Science
To assess the acceptability of routine screening for perinatal depression.Postnatal women (n=860) and health professionals (n=916) were surveyed after 3 years of routine perinatal (antenataland postnatal) use of the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS). Over 90% of women had the screening explained to them and found the EPDS easy to complete; 85% had no difficulties completing it. Discomfort with screening was significantly related to having a higher EPDS score. A majority of health professionals using the EPDS was comfortable and found it useful. The sample involved only maternity services supporting depression screening. In addition, the response rate from GPs was low. Routine screening with the EPDS is acceptable to most women and health professionals. Sensitive explanation, along with staff training and support, is essential in implementing depression screening.