Assessment and Promotion of Partner Support: A Prevention-focused Intervention for Perinatal Depression in Primary Care

Date of Award


Document Type

Undergraduate Capstone Project

Degree Name


Organizational Unit

Graduate School of Professional Psychology

First Advisor

Judith Fox

Second Advisor

Hale Martin

Third Advisor

Kim Spring Thompson


Training manual, Assessment, Primary care, Prevention, Perinatal depression


Perinatal depression significantly impacts the mother, her partner, the unborn fetus, and the infant/child after delivery. A review of the literature supports the need for preventive intervention methods as research has shown that even with successful treatment, disruptions in attachment, temperament, and cognitive development often remain. Primary care settings are ideal targets for prevention given that they can reach a number of people at low-cost without the stigma associated with seeking help in a mental health facility. This paper purposes a preventive intervention method for perinatal depression that can be implemented in primary care settings in both Western and non-Western countries. The intervention targets two of the primary risk factors for perinatal depression; partner support and relationship quality. The intervention is structured around key target periods in gestational development and during the early weeks after delivery. Suggestions for each target visit are based on prior research that has demonstrated how psychoeducation about the transition to parenthood, as well as increased communication, can positively affect partner support and relationship quality. The ultimate goal of the intervention is not only to prevent perinatal depression but also to improve the mental health and wellbeing of the entire family system.

Publication Statement

Copyright is held by the author. Permanently suppressed.


32 pages

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