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North London Partners Specialist Perinatal Mental Health Service

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Upcoming Review — this page is due to be reviewed by Saturday, 29 June 2024. The information shown here may be outdated.

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
  • are 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

The NLP SPMHS 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)
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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 and guidance, or if you 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.

South Team (Camden and Islington) t: 020 3317 7114

East Team (Enfield & Haringey) t: 020 3317 7198

West Team (Barnet) 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 and trauma

For bereavement and trauma referrals, see Maternal Mental Health: Maple service page.

Maple is 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


The service is 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)
  • are open to a secondary mental health service
  • are experiencing new thoughts or acts of self-harm
  • have experienced a recent significant change in mental state
  • have a mental illness/psychological disturbance that can't be managed by primary care services
  • have expressions of incompetency as a mother or estrangement from the infant
  • would benefit from advice on/review of psychiatric medication during pregnancy/breastfeeding (this includes provision for preconception advice and relapse prevention work).


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

How to Refer

EMIS form

Referral methods: Email

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

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.

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

Where to find the form

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


SPMHS South Team (Camden and Islington)

SPMHS East Team (Enfield & Haringey)

SPMHS West Team (Barnet)

Service Feedback


Review date: Saturday, 29 June 2024