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Help Develop Maternal Mental Health Services in Kent

TONIC is researching how Maternal Mental Health Services can be improved in Kent and Medway to best support women and their partners after experiencing birth trauma or loss. We are pleased to share the article below which explains more.

We need your help to develop Maternal Mental Health Services in Kent and Medway.

Around 1 in 4 women experience mental health problems in pregnancy and during the 24 months after giving birth. The NHS is committed to provide them with high-quality perinatal mental health care and has recently announced the rollout of 26 new dedicated Maternal Mental Health Services combining maternity, reproductive health and psychological therapy for women experiencing mental health difficulties linked to their maternity experience.

The development of Maternal Mental Health Services sets out clear objectives to offer psychological therapies for birth trauma and baby loss. As part of the Long Term Plan, mental health services across the country will help at least 66,000 women with moderate to severe perinatal mental health difficulties to access to specialist care by 2023/24.

Kent and Medway NHS and Social Care Partnership Trust (KMPT) and East Kent Hospitals University NHS Foundation Trust have developed a pilot project called Thrive: Psychological Support for Birth Trauma and Loss. Thrive is an inclusive, multi-professional service, offering assessment and interventions to those experiencing moderate/severe mental health difficulties as a result of birth trauma and/or loss. Specialist Midwives within the service provide clinical expertise and knowledge of birth loss and trauma, and support for future pregnancies. The Specialist Clinical Psychologist provides EMDR therapy and Trauma Informed CBT. Additionally, a person at the service with lived experience of birth trauma or loss is available to offer support and advice. This may include supporting someone at their assessment, sharing their experience of recovery, or linking in with support groups. Based on the need of each person, further advice and signposting can be offered. The service started receiving referrals in in January 2021.

TONIC is conducting interviews and surveys with women and their partners who have experienced birth trauma or loss, as we want to know your thoughts on how to roll this type of service out across other areas in Kent and Medway, to ensure these services are accessible, effective, and suitable for all.

If you are a woman who has experienced birth trauma or loss, you can:

• Complete a 15 minute survey:

• Participate in an hour-long interview – you will receive a £20 voucher for this.

If you are a partner of a woman who has experienced birth trauma or loss, you can:

• Complete a 10 minute survey:

• Participate in an hour-long interview – you will receive a £20 voucher for this

Participation is anonymous and confidential – you will not be asked for any identifiable information. Surveys and interviews are your opportunity to provide us with your ideas and opinions on this topic. TONIC will then analyse all responses received, with findings being written up into a report to inform the wider roll out of Maternal Mental Health Services across Kent and Medway.

If you are interested or simply want to find out more, please text the word ‘THRIVE’ to 07860 015 450 or email ‘THRIVE’ to


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