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Funding boost to help new mums suffering from depression

The Perinatal Mental Health unit has welcomed a £108,000 grant

Members of the Perinatal Mental Health team: Joanna Girling, Julia Lidderdale, Dr Elizabeth Davison, Louise Page

A huge funding boost has been given to a project helping new mums suffering from depression at West Middlesex Hospital.

An additional £108,000 funding will continue to provide support for women experiencing perinatal mental health and well-being issues before or after giving birth.

The money will be used over the next 12 months in the Isleworth hospital's Perinatal Mental Health unit, launched nine months ago, to teach women and their loved ones about warning signs, risk of depression and other help they may need.

The unit is run by a team of NHS staff including consultants, a psychiatrist, a specialist midwife and a GP.

Julia Lidderdale, perinatal mental health specialist midwife, said: “The team have worked together engaging Hounslow GPs, delivering training to doctors, nurses and midwives and providing undergraduate medical students from Imperial College London and midwifery students at the University of West London with specific perinatal mental health training.”

The project is delivered jointly by West Middlesex Hospital, West London Mental Health NHS Trust and Hounslow Clinical Commissioning Group.

The hospital's statistics have shown one in 10 new mums will experience some form of depressive illness during pregnancy or in the first year of their baby’s life.

Louise Page, consultant obstetrician and gynaecologist at West Middlesex Hospital added that student midwives, health visitors, nurses and medical students have shown an enthusiasm for learning.

Ms Page said: "They have been so passionate about their learning, keen to identify areas where they lacked knowledge and improve their confidence in recognising perinatal mental health problems.

“We are delighted to have received the extra funding which means over the next 12 months we can continue educating health professionals throughout Hounslow and supporting new mums.

"We also hope to share our expertise with other north-west London boroughs such as Ealing, Kensington & Chelsea, and Hammersmith & Fulham.”

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