Prevention of Perinatal Mental Health Disorders Special Interest Group | The International Marce Society for Perinatal Mental Health

Prevention of Perinatal Mental Health Disorders Special Interest Group

Welcome to our SIG! We began our SIG in July 2021 and have had a wonderful and welcoming response! In October 2021, we had six meetings with a wide international audience on a variety of topics, including effective programs for prevention of perinatal mental disorders (universal and high risk populations); family-based preventive interventions of perinatal mental disorders; implementation/integration of prevention programs in primary health care services; prevention of perinatal mental disorders in developing countries; prevention programs using new technologies; and policy advocacy/implications for prevention of perinatal mental disorders. We plan to continue our discussion to identify topics of mutual interests and determine best ways to collaborate moving forward. If you are interested in joining our Prevention of Perinatal Mental Health Disorders distribution list, please contact the Executive Office. 

Huynh-Nhu (Mimi) Le, PhD

Licensed Clinical Psychologist SIG Co-chair

Emma Motrico, PhD
SIG Co-chair University Loyola Andalucia, Spain
Department of Psychology

Joël Djatche Miafo
Responsable de divers projets en Santé Mentale et Psychologie Clinique · UNIPSY Cameroun Email:

Patricia Kinser PhD, WHNP-BC, RN, FAAN
Endowed Professor and Assistant Dean of Research, Scholarship, and Innovation at the Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) School of Nursing

Mijke Lambregtse – van den Berg
Perinatal Psychiatrist, Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist, Infant MH specialist.
Assoc prof – Erasmus Medical Center.

Sarah Moyer Student, PhD 
Program Facilitator, PhD Peer Mentors Project Coordinator, Mamma Mia Study VCU School of Nursing

Tatiana Valverde
Assistant Professor, Queens University, Canada

Claire Wilson
NIHR Academic Clinical Lecturer and Psychiatry Specialist Registrar

Elizabeth Werner
Assistant Professor of Behavioral Medicine Department of Psychiatry, Columbia University

Anu Yadava 
Consultant in Adult & Perinatal Psychiatry Special Interest in Biological Psychiatry of Cancer and Cancer Treatments
Perinatal and Parent-Infant Mental Health Service National Health Service (NHS), London


This was the first report, developed by the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) and the Maternal Mental Health Alliance (MMHA), that showed that the economic cost to society of not effectively treating perinatal mental illness far outweighs the cost of providing appropriate services.  To address this issue, the British government has invested £365 million (up to 2021) in perinatal mental health services.

  • Barrera, A. Z., Wickham, R. E., & Muñoz, R. F. (2015). Online prevention of postpartum depression for Spanish- and English-speaking pregnant women: A pilot randomized controlled trial. Internet Interventions, 2(3), 257–265.

This is the first randomized control trial that evaluated an online intervention based on the Mothers and Babies program to prevent postpartum depression in pregnant women. This publication launched a new line of research on online interventions that now has hundreds of studies worldwide.

  • Curry, S. J., Krist, A. H., Owens, D. K., Barry, M. J., Caughey, A. B., Davidson, K. W., Doubeni, C. A., Epling, J. W., Grossman, D. C., Kemper, A. R., Kubik, M., Landefeld, C. S., Mangione, C. M., Silverstein, M., Simon, M. A., Tseng, C. W., & Wong, J. B. (2019). Interventions to Prevent Perinatal Depression: US Preventive Services Task Force Recommendation Statement. JAMA – Journal of the American Medical Association, 321(6), 580–587.

The United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) reviewed 50 methodologically rigorous studies and and found good evidence that counseling interventions (two are cited: the Mothers and Babies Program, a cognitive behavioral intervention; the Reach Out, Stand Strong, Essentials for new Mothers (ROSE), interpersonal psychotherapy intervention) are effective in preventing perinatal depression among pregnant and postpartum individuals.  This publication highlighted the significance of interventions to prevent perinatal depression.  

  • Muñoz, R. F., Le, H. N., Barrera, A. Z., & Pineda, B. S. (2021). Leading the charge toward a world without depression: perinatal depression can be prevented. Archives of women’s mental health24(5), 807–815.

This article celebrates the 40th anniversary of the Marcé Society and provides a 50-year historical perspective on the prevention of perinatal depression (PD).  It uses the Mothers and Babies Program as a case study to present evidence that PD can be prevented, how digital tools can be implemented worldwide, and provides recommendations for the next 40 years “to lead us toward a world without depression.” 

  • Webb, R., Uddin, N., Ford, E., Easter, A., Shakespeare, J., Roberts, N., Alderdice, F., Coates, R., Hogg, S., Cheyne, H., Ayers, S., Clark, E., Frame, E., Gilbody, S., Hann, A., McMullen, S., Rosan, C., Salmon, D., Sinesi, A., … Williams, L. R. (2021). Barriers and facilitators to implementing perinatal mental health care in health and social care settings: a systematic review. The Lancet Psychiatry, 8(6), 521–534.

In this systematic review, the authors discussed barriers and facilitators to implementing assessment, care, referral and treatment for perinatal mental health into health and social care services.  A complex interplay of individual, health-care professional, interpersonal, organizational, political and societal factors were identified and strategies to overcome those barriers are suggested.