Methods: This research used previously collected and analyzed data from a study investigating the experiences of mothers belonging to marginalized groups who became mothers during the COVID-19 pandemic. The original study centered on environmental conditions of perinatal care, perceived racism, trauma experienced, and the perinatal experience. The study used a qualitative story inquiry design that gathered stories from pregnant mothers (n=15), mothers who gave birth (n=35), nurses, doulas and midwives who worked with perinatal populations (n=5), and persons who were support people (n=5) to perinatal populations. The original study centered around the Theory of Supportive Care Environments and focused on what factors created a supportive care environment for mothers during the perinatal period. Using this analyzed data, the research team used intervention mapping, which is a six-step documented process for creating an intervention.
Results: These findings illuminated specific, contextual ways that therapeutic providers could create a safe, culturally relevant, trauma-informed space for mothers experiencing mental health challenges. The intervention matrix contains five research informed modules (Depression, Pervasive Uncertainty, Social Connection, Health Care Empowerment, and Maternal Role) in addition to 3 potential add-ons (Suicidality, Cultural Specificity, and IPV) based on clinician decisions. Each module includes goals, targets, and resources for clinicians.
Conclusions and Implications: This intervention was evidence-based and trauma-informed and has the potential to overcome multi-dimensional disparities in maternal mental health care. Participants will learn steps to intervention development that are culturally, trauma, and research informed. In addition, participants will understand specific environmental stressors that impact those giving birth and how that impacts their mental health.