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Impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on perinatal mental health screening, illness and pregnancy outcomes: A cohort study.

Published version
Peer-reviewed

Repository DOI


Type

Article

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Authors

Kemp, Michelle 
Kabacs, Nikolett 

Abstract

BACKGROUND: The aim was to explore the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on perinatal mental health screening, illness and related pregnancy complications/outcomes. METHODS: A single-centre retrospective cohort study in mothers giving birth before versus during the pandemic. Primary outcomes were the comparative prevalence/incidence of peripartum psychiatric diagnoses. Secondary outcomes were the pandemic's effect on psychiatric screening accuracy, and on other pregnancy outcomes linked to mental health. RESULTS: The pandemic did not significantly increase the crude incidence of diagnosed peripartum anxiety (risk ratio (RR) = 1.39, 95% CI = 0.66-2.95), depression (RR = 1.63, 95% CI = 0.72-3.70) or other pregnancy outcomes. In multivariate models, the pandemic decreased Apgar scores and was involved in interaction effects for postpartum mental illness and birthweight. Psychiatric screening at the booking appointment exhibited lower sensitivity in predicting antenatal mental illness (pre-pandemic = 85.71%, pandemic = 25.00%; p = 0.035). CONCLUSIONS: The lowered screening sensitivity likely meant mental illness was poorly anticipated/under-detected during the pandemic, leading to no crude increase in perinatal psychiatric diagnoses.

Description

Keywords

COVID-19, Pregnancy, mental health, pandemic, postpartum depression

Journal Title

Obstet Med

Conference Name

Journal ISSN

1753-495X
1753-4968

Volume Title

16

Publisher

SAGE Publications