What is it about?

There are around a quarter of the total postpartum mothers in Indonesia who experience mental health problems. Midwives have an important role in providing postpartum mental health care. This study explores the views and experiences of midwives in providing mental health care to postpartum mothers in the absence of national guidelines through a qualitative phenomenological design. There are four themes under midwives' perceptions of their role in providing postpartum mental health care: ‘a midwife’s role as a companion and supporter’, ‘mental health needs to be addressed during pregnancy’, ‘a midwife’s important role providing mental healthcare for postpartum mothers’, and ‘providing holistic care, not just physical’. In addition, there are six themes of midwives' experience in providing mental health care to postpartum women: ‘identifying issues by examining attitude’, ‘an intensive approach to initial treatment’, ‘collaborative care or referrals for patients who need further treatment’, ‘openness and a co-operative attitude determine success’, ‘physical and social aspects of successful healthcare’ and ‘midwives need standard guidelines’.

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Why is it important?

Midwives have an important role in providing care for postpartum mothers, especially in the field of mental health. Unfortunately, no specific regulations were issued to promote maternal mental health services in Indonesia even after mental health services were identified as a national strategic plan by the Indonesian Ministry of Health in 2015. In addition, maternal mental health services are an underdeveloped field of study, especially in low- and middle-income countries, and have been included in global research priorities. Therefore, this study aims to understand the implementation of maternal mental health services provided by midwives by exploring their views on their roles and experiences. In addition, the difference in authority of midwives in providing care at various levels of facilities is a consideration in evaluating the experience of midwives in providing mental health care for postpartum mothers.


In regard to the importance of midwives’ role in providing postpartum mental health care, it is urgently needed a standard guideline to assure that all postpartum women receive mental health care adequately.

Farida Fitriana
Universitas Airlangga

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Providing mental healthcare for postpartum women in Indonesia: a qualitative phenomenological study, British Journal of Midwifery, December 2022, Mark Allen Group, DOI: 10.12968/bjom.2022.30.12.692.
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