The University of Washington is offering an important new service: The University of Washington Perinatal Psychiatry Consultation Line (206-685-2924). It is a free phone consultation service for any health care provider in Washington State who is caring for a pregnant or postpartum woman with mental health needs. The line is staffed by a perinatal psychiatrist from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. on weekdays. Providers can also leave a message at any time and staff will respond as soon as possible.
This comes at a time when there is an increased recognition of the association between a woman’s mental health status and maternal and infant outcomes, compounded by a shortage of perinatal psychiatrists.
The program staff can consult on any mental health-related questions for patients who are pregnant, in the first year postpartum, or who have pregnancy-related complications (e.g. pregnancy loss, infertility). Topics may include:
- Depression, anxiety, or other psychiatric disorders (e.g., bipolar disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder)
- Adjustment to pregnancy loss, complications, or difficult life events
- Risks of psychiatric medications
- Non-medication treatments
In addition, the University of Washington has a PAL (Child and Adolescent consultation) line at 866-599-7257 and a Psychiatry and Addictions Case Conference, which is a weekly teleconference connecting community providers with UW psychiatrists and addiction experts. Learn more. (Janine Reisinger)