North London Partners Specialist Perinatal Mental Health Service (SPMHS)

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The North London Partners (NLP) Specialist Perinatal Mental Health Service (SPMHS), provides specialist care for women with mental health problems who:

  • are planning a pregnancy and need advice
  • currently pregnant
  • have had a baby in the past 13 months (with follow-up for up to 24 months).

The service consists of core members of the multidisciplinary team, including psychiatrists, clinical psychologists, nurses, occupational therapists, nursery nurses, administrators and peer support workers.

The team sees women in outpatient clinics in various locations, including antenatal clinics where women are receiving their obstetric care, team bases, children centres, as well as home visits.


Service aims

  • To improve the health and wellbeing of women who have, or are at risk of, mental health problems, and to improve outcomes for women, their infants, partners and their families (NICE guidelines on Antenatal and Postnatal Mental Health are followed).
  • To detect, prevent and treat perinatal mental illness, and to allow women time to consider the treatment and support options available in order to receive safe and effective care.
  • To work collaboratively with families/carers and various other statutory and voluntary services (e.g. maternity services, obstetricians, health visitors, other secondary mental health services and GPs) to ensure good partnership working to support women’s physical and mental health needs.
  • To teach and train other health professionals so that they can have a good working knowledge of how mental health problems affect women in pregnancy and after birth

See Downloads for useful documents.


Advice line

If you need advice, guidance, or have a query regarding a patient or referral, you can speak to a duty clinician on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays between 11am-12pm by calling the relevant number below, depending on which borough the patient lives in.  

Please note: The following numbers are for professionals only.

The service is split into three sub-teams, based on the borough where the woman lives, and continues to be STP aligned covering the NCL region of Barnet, Camden, Enfield, Haringey & Islington. 

South Team (Camden and Islington):  Bloomsbury Building | St Pancras Hospital
t: 020 3317 7114

East Team (Enfield & Haringey):  Forest Road Primary Care Centre | 308A Hertford Road
t: 020 3317 7198

West Team (Barnet):  North London Partners | Cedar Place | 890 High Road
t: 020 3317 7001 

(*Exception to this will be if the woman resides in a borough outside NCL, but has a GP in NCL and their local perinatal mental health team defines eligibility by borough of GP rather than address of service user).


Bereavement & trauma

For bereavement and trauma referrals, please see Maple Service (Maternal Mental Health Service): a community-based psychological therapy service that supports people experiencing fear, trauma or loss arising from fertility, pregnancy or birth-related difficulties as well as the loss of a baby.


Eligibility criteria

Inclusions

The service is now able to work with people who are undergoing treatment with the team up to 24 months postnatally, when appropriate.

The NLP SPMHS accepts referrals for women who are planning a pregnancy, are pregnant, or who have given birth within the last 13 months and:

  • have been diagnosed at any time with a severe mental illness, (e.g. bipolar affective disorder/schizophrenia/schizoaffective disorder/postpartum psychosis/severe depression), or
  • are currently open to a secondary mental health service, or 
  • are experiencing new thoughts or acts of self-harm, or  
  • have experienced a recent significant change in mental state, or
  • have a mental illness/psychological disturbance that can’t be managed by primary care services, or
  • have expressions of incompetency as a mother or estrangement from the infant, or
  • would benefit from advice on/review of psychiatric medication during pregnancy/breastfeeding (this includes provision for preconception advice and relapse prevention work).

Exclusions

  • substance-misuse problems in the absence of mental health problems
  • women experiencing milder forms of perinatal mental health problems.

In making your referral please consider functional impairment, level of social support, substance use, safeguarding issues and if there is a need for an immediate response (e.g. if the woman’s needs are acute and urgent referral to local crisis services should be considered).

The team aims to see new referrals within six weeks of receiving the referral or, if urgent, within two weeks.


How to refer

EMIS form

Referral methods: Email, EMIS managed referral

Complete the EMIS form called Specialist Perinatal Mental Health Services Referral - NCL and email to NCL.perinatal@candi.nhs.uk

Where to find the form

  • Barnet: BAR Global Library > Referral Forms (BAR GLOBAL) 
  • Enfield: ENF Global Library > Mental Health 
  • Haringey: HAR - Global Library > Mental Health 
  • Islington: ISL Global Library > Mental Health 

For CamdenCamden EMIS Forms page > Specialist Perinatal Mental Health Services Referral - NCL

Refer antenatal patients to both maternity (or ask patient to self-refer to maternity) and to SPMHS, if indicated.

Editable PDF / Word document Download Form

Referral methods: Email

Complete the form and send to the email below:

e: NCL.perinatal@Candi.nhs.uk


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