#InternationalWomensDay: New mother’s mental health bill
March 8, 2019
To mark #InternationalWomensDay 2019, Bath MP Wera Hobhouse is seeking to improve care for new mothers by introducing a Bill to Parliament that will require the routine 6 weeks post-natal check-up to include a mental health assessment.
Hobhouse said: ‘It is extremely worrying that nearly half of new mothers who have experienced mental health or emotional issues have not had their problem identified by a health professional or received any help or treatment.’
After successfully introducing a Bill to make upskirting illegal last year, Hobhouse hopes that this new legislation will ‘ensure women are getting proper mental health advice and treatment as part of their six-week new mother check-up’.
‘Shockingly high prevalence of mental disorders in young pregnant women’
Two-thirds of pregnant women under 25 show signs of mental health problems, research has uncovered.
The study, conducted by academics at King’s College London, found that 67% of women aged 16-24 met the criteria for conditions such as anxiety, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder.
Lead author of the study, Dr Georgia Lockwood, said: ‘We’ve shown a shockingly high prevalence of mental disorders in young pregnant women aged 16 to 24 years in London compared with women aged 25 years or older.’
New taskforce aims to improve student’s mental health
On #UniMentalHealth Day (7 March), Education Secretary Damian Hinds announced the government’s plans to set up a taskforce to better support student’s mental health.
According to Sky News, 100 students took their own lives in 2018. The taskforce aims to better support students who are making the difficult transition from home to university or college.
Rosie Tressler, CEO of Student Minds, said: ‘On University Mental Health Day, and all year round, we need to ensure that student mental health is a strategic priority at our Universities and for health providers. Together, we can use our voices to improve the futures of millions of people.’
Levels of psychological distress are on the rise among students
The largest ever poll of university students suggests ‘alarmingly high’ levels of anxiety, loneliness, substance misuse and thoughts of self-harm.
44.7% of students who took part in the study admitted to using alcohol or drugs to cope. With half of students reporting thoughts of self-harm, the findings have prompted ‘an urgent call to action.’