Yet, the good news is that with access to regular,evidence-based Interpersonal Psychotherapy (IPT) these women show signs of remission from antenatal depression; the treatment appears to be cost-effective; clients really like it, and babies have a good start in life. Rich quantitative and qualitative data pertaining to the aforementioned results will be presented in this symposium via four professional papers describing studies that utilized IPT for perinatal depression.
IPT is a here-and-now focused, short-term, time-limited therapy whose theoretical framework views the client's psychological distress as linked to her interpersonal context. IPT has been adapted to be culturally sensitive to the client's race/ethnicity, socio-economic class, nationality, and other relevant features. Treatment goals include empowering the client to master her current social roles and constructively resolve stressful interpersonal problems, including role disputes, role transitions, and complicated grief. IPT has shown substantial efficacy and effectiveness in nearly 100 clinical trials.
1) Results from a NIMH-funded randomized controlled trial (entitled “MOMCare”) on the effectiveness and cost effectiveness of Brief IPT for pregnant women in public health on Medicaid with major depression will be presented. 2) Qualitative findings, obtained after the MOMCare trial was over, will be presented, focusing on what clients viewed as IPT change mechanisms and how barriers to care were overcome. 3) Results from a NIMH-funded study examining the effects of Brief IPT for perinatal depression in socio-economically disadvantaged women will be presented. In the latter study, IPT included a postpartum attachment-based dyadic-component to further maintain mother's treatment gains and enhance the mother-infant relationship. 4) A set of quantitative and qualitative findings will be presented examining the relationship between antenatal depression, trauma, and economically disadvantaged adolescent motherhood that resulted in the development of a trauma-informed adaptation of Brief IPT.
The effectiveness of Interpersonal Psychotherapy for perinatal depression seems to be due to the fact that IPT has strong social work roots (Klerman,Weissman et al.,1984). IPT was developed based on observations and self-reports of how clinical social workers provided effective depression care to their clients. The discussant, the primary founder of IPT, will elaborate on IPT's social work roots and the relevance of training social work students in IPT, given that social workers are annually providing psychotherapy to 0.5% of the US population (Weissman et al.,2006). The discussant will briefly discuss the obstacles and advantages to providing evidence-based psychotherapy training as reported by social work training directors.