Date of Award


Document Type

Independent Study

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Postpartum depression (PPD) is a clinical disorder that is very difficult to diagnose. In fact, research indicates that many providers are not screening PPD accurately during perinatal and postpartum pe1iods. A clinical case study presented by the author, conducted a postpartum visit with a 25-year-old mother who had risk factors for PPD and evidence suggestive of PPD at her postpartum visit. The provider however, did not utilize effective assessment tools when assessing the mother for PPD; therefore, the diagnosis was not made. A literature review was conducted using the CINAHL database looking at the interventions to effectively assess for PPD. Interventions that were analyzed included: motivational interviewing, standardized assessment tools and outreach interventions such as nurse home visits and phone screening. It was concluded that providers need to be motivated to screen for PPD and confident in themselves and the tool they were using to accurately screen. Furthermore, the author compared standardized PPD screening tools, including: the Edinburgh Postpartum Depression Screening (EPDS), PHQ- 9, Postpartum Depression Screening Scale (POSS) and the Centers for Epidemiology for Depression Screening (CED-S) tool. The results were often inconclusive as to one screening tool over another; however, the EPDS was the most widely used and accepted. Additionally, outreach programs such as nurse follow-up and phone visits were seen as positive screening tools.