Messages of Support

posted Oct 26, 2015, 2:18 PM by Allison Hastey   [ updated Nov 11, 2015, 1:52 PM by Frances Tourtelot ]
We were honored to work with the Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment (CDPHE) and Dr. Kendyl Salcito on a statewide pregnancy related depression message project the past few months. Pregnancy related depression (PRD) is the most common complication of pregnancy, affecting more than 1 in 10 Colorado women of reproductive age. Unfortunately most women who suffer from PRD never seek help and/or receive care. 

The project consisted of developing messages for affected women and their support systems (partners, friends, counselors, etc.) and conducting market research with diverse audiences, public and professional, across Colorado. The collected information, now available on CDPHE's site, will be used to inform a future statewide public awareness campaign to increase the number of women seeking and receiving treatment. 

We've participated in many focus groups in our career and yet these had a special, unplanned result. Without prompt or instruction, we witnessed multiple times the participants exchange numbers and make plans to meet up in the future. It demonstrated the mothers' desire for a safe space and social group to be honest about their experiences. We couldn't have been more touched to provide the opportunity for them. 

Media attention (select few linked below) around PRD, or postpartum depression, has increased over the last month in large part to actress Hayden Panettiere's openness about her own struggle.
While we are extremely pleased to see the conversation unfolding at the national level, PRD needs a voice in Colorado, too. If you work with pregnant women and moms, are one yourself, or want to offer support to a loved one, we encourage you to read our PRD awareness findings report. It's hefty, we know, but we hope you find value in the discussions and recommendations. Plus, there is always the executive summary for those looking for a quick read :)