Early Mothers Day Gift

This Mother’s Day, An Extra Gift For New Mothers
New Federal Law to Combat Postpartum Depression

To interview experts on mental health policy and practice, contact Meena Dayak at 202.684.7457 or MeenaD@thenationalcouncil.org

(Washington, DC, May 7, 2010)—The National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare commends U.S. Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) and Rep. Bobby Rush (D-IL) for championing the fight against postpartum depression by authoring the Melanie Blocker Stokes MOTHERS Act, signed into law as part of health insurance reform. After a five year fight to educate lawmakers and get it passed, this new law will begin in earnest the federal effort to combat postpartum depression.

The MOTHERS Act will establish a comprehensive federal commitment to combating postpartum depression through new research, education initiatives and support programs.

Under the new law, local community organizations, hospitals or even state or local governments can apply for grants to provide education and services for the diagnosis and management of postpartum depression. The grants could also be used to provide education about postpartum conditions to promote earlier diagnosis and treatment. For instance, if the recipient is a medical facility, the grants could be used to educate new mothers and family members about postpartum depression before new mothers leave the health facility.

Health insurance reform law also requires that all new insurance plans cover comprehensive women’s preventive care and screenings.

A primer on the MOTHERS Act and answers to frequently asked questions about postpartum depression are available on Sen. Menendez’s website.

To locate a community mental health service provider in your area, visit www.TheNationalCouncil.org and use the “Find a Provider” feature on the right sidebar.

Happy Mother’s Day!
The National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare is a not-for-profit, association of 1,700 behavioral healthcare organizations that provide treatment and rehabilitation for mental illnesses and addictions disorders to nearly six million adults, children and families in communities across the country. The National Council and its members bear testimony to the fact that medical, social, psychological, and rehabilitation services offered in community settings help

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