It’s not happening across the board quite yet, but props to those places already screening new moms for postpartum depression here in Hawaii. The Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) is commonly used worldwide and it is a paper and pencil screening device. There is a lot of research behind it and its use, in many different populations around the world. It takes 5 minutes for the mother to fill out, < than 5 minutes to “score”. It does not diagnose a woman, but is a screening device.

First, the Waianae Coast Comprehensive Health Center‘s Perinatal Support Services screens every mom they see, says Teresa Gonsalves, LSW, director of case management and utilization. And not just once, not twice but three times in the first 6 months. Plus, they’ve been screening for a number of years now.

Second to the “list” is Tripler Army Medical Center (TAMC). According to one mom, she was given the Edinburgh, made to watch a video about postpartum depression before being allowed to leave the hospital after giving birth, and a brochure (or two) about “PPD”. Another awesome, to TAMC. Also military, Marine Corps Base Hawaii (MCBH) screens moms at baby appointments (so, the pediatrician’s office?)!

HMSA offers screening to expectant and postpartum moms if mom signs up for He Hapai Pono, The Good Pregnancy.

I have some reports locally from moms using other services and hospitals. Kapiolani Medical Center (KMCWC) seems to be screening moms after giving birth and there may be “PPD” brochures in the take home packets–a.k.a. “Giant Folder”. Also, possibly screenings regularly at GYN appointments for a year after birth.

I really should call each place, but these are the raw impressions moms have. A year ago, moms were reporting NOT being screened. Whether screenings were being done or not–moms were not perceiving being screened.

A couple of moms very recently have mentioned not being screened at any point in the normal course of pregnancy, birth, and early postpartum.

I hope KNOW the day IS comes COMING soon when I regularly hear about screening and information being provided. As one mom mentioned, the optimal time would be during pregnancy when one can still think, hear, learn without the haze of sleep-deprivation and needs of a new infant. Those Giant Folders are often unearthed when baby is around…. oh… 8 months already!

Still, more and more moms are reporting being screened for “PPD”.