Importance of validation and reassurance

Healthcare professionals are in a position to minimise the impact of stigma on new parents by ensuring that any disclosure is met with reassurance and validation. Examples of how this can be embedded in practice are:

When Attitude Outcome
First contact Express understanding that mental health care is an important part of the care provided. Show willingness to address mental health concerns during care practice. Communicate positive feelings towards the implementation of care regarding mental health. Shared understanding that offering support for mental health needs are crucial to perinatal care.
During care Communicate importance of assessment and screening of mental health needs. Be motivated to advise and signpost to relevant sources of support. Be supportive and non-judgemental if/when parents disclose concerns regarding mental health and stigma. Acknowledge the importance of continued support, appropriate monitoring and non-judgemental approach in supporting mental health needs
Multi-disciplinary working Show willingness to work inter-professionally and share responsibilities with other HCPs regarding mental health care. Communicate to the parent the relevance and benefits of having a multidisciplinary professional healthcare network that can contribute to their mental health care Acknowledge importance of involving relevant healthcare professionals and creating a network of support to manage mental health needs appropriately
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Guidance for Healthcare Professionals Working with Families in the Perinatal Period

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