The position statement aims to articulate the arguments for and against universal psychosocial assessment and depression screening, and provide guidance to assist decision-making by clinicians, policy makers and health services. More specifically it: 1. Outlines the general principles and concepts involved in psychosocial assessment and depression screening; 2. Outlines the current debate regarding benefits and risks in this area of practice including the clinical benefits and the ethical, cultural and resource implications of undertaking universal psychosocial assessment in the primary health care setting; 3. Provides a document that will assist with advocacy for the development of perinatal mental health services in the primary care setting. The statement does not set out to make specific recommendations about psychosocial assessment and depression screening (as these will need to be devised locally depending on existing resources and models of care) nor does it attempt to summarise the vast evidence-base relevant to this debate.
Keywords: antenatal screening; perinatal mental health; post-natal depression; prevention.
Copyright © 2013. Published by Elsevier Ltd.