With funding from Blue Cross, Blue Shield, HMHB has been working on many fronts in improving healthcare for those experiencing perinatal mood and anxiety disorders (PMADs) in Montana. Work continued on developing the Perinatal Screening Protocol for Primary Care Providers and a complete draft including the algorithm and narrative were presented in early December. We plan to have a final draft in December after a few finishing touches and be able to distribute the final product in 2019.
In addition to that working group, Melissa Bangs is wrapping up her work with community-based perinatal support coalitions in Missoula, Helena and the Flathead. Currently, these groups are working to find permanent homes and facilitators within their communities to ensure their long-term success. Coalitions are determining their own work plans, which include goals such as maternal mental health public awareness campaigns, education for providers and resource and referral guides.
On October 20 and 21st, HMHB in collaboration with the Clinical Psychology Department at the University of Montana, hosted The Perinatal Mental Health Conference at Fairmont Hot Springs Resort. This two-day intensive workshop will bring in national experts to help professionals working with folks in the perinatal period to identify, diagnose and treat PMADs. Over 200 folks working in the perinatal space attended and evaluations show they were overall pleased with the conference and are eager for more training.