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Immigrant and refugee women experiencing postpartum depression

This featured “Editor’s Pick” article represents one of the most important aspects of nursing scholarship – our abiding concern for the health of communities that are all too frequently ignored.  Anyone who is in a situation outside of one’s zone of personal comfort faces immense challenges, but the challenge is amplified for women experiencing one of the most dramatic of life transitions – pregnancy and birth.  This article, titled “Barriers and Facilitators of Social Supports for IMmigrant and Regugee Women Coping with Postpartum Depression” was authored by a team of researchers: Joyce Maureen O’Mahony, PhD, RN; Tam Truong Donnelly, PhD, RN; Shelley Raffin Bouchal PhD, RN and David Estes, PhD.  Dr. O’Mahony and Dr. Donnelly (shown in the photo to the right), described their interests in this project:

Joyce O’Mahony’s experience as a community health nurse encouraged her to explore further the postpartum depression experiences of immigrant women in her doctoral research. This research study was motivated by the need to enhance opportunities for improved health through the perspectives of immigrant and refugee women in the postpartum period.

Tam Truong Donnelly’s research encompasses health and wellness of immigrants and refugees which include immigrants’ and refugees’ mental healthcare, immigrant women’s breast cancer and cervical cancer screening practices. Currently her research focuses on Arab women’s breast cancer screening, depression among cardiovascular patients, and lifestyle risk factors that contribute to chronic diseases.

A continuation of this study is necessary to design intervention strategies for postpartum depression support and health care access for immigrant women. Future research studies are planned for: a) knowledge synthesis of immigrant women’s experiences of postpartum depression in Canada; b) focused interventions of providing appropriate support and educational components for immigrant women in the perinatal period.

This research provides important implications for health care of immigrant and refugee people. Visit the ANS web site now to download a free copy of this very important article.

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