WHO Prioritises Maternal Mental Health in New Guidelines

The World Health Organization (WHO) has launched its first ever global guidelines to support women and newborns in the postnatal period - the first six weeks after birth. This is a critical time for ensuring newborn and maternal survival and for supporting healthy development of the baby as well as the mother's overall mental and physical recovery and wellbeing.

Maternal mental health has been prioritised with universally recommended screening for and prevention for maternal depression and anxiety during the postnatal period. For the first time, WHO has also issued recommendations for universal screening of newborns for abnormalities, hearing impairment, and hyperbilirubinemia. These screening interventions will need effective systems for referral confirming diagnosis, management of the conditions and follow ups.

These recommendations complete a trilogy of guidelines from WHO for quality maternity care through pregnancy and during and after childbirth, centred on meeting the needs of all those who give birth and their babies. These uphold the rights to a positive healthcare experience, where people are treated with dignity and respect and can participate actively in healthcare decisions.


(file photo).

Follow AllAfrica

AllAfrica publishes around 600 reports a day from more than 100 news organizations and over 500 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.