UNC Health Care
Samantha Meltzer-Brody

UNC opens first inpatient perinatal psychiatry unit in U.S.

The UNC Department of Psychiatry and the UNC Center for Women’s Mood Disorders have opened a 5-bed unit for women with moderate to severe post-partum depression (PPD). The unit is the first of its kind in the United States.

It is modeled after European mom-and-baby units. Ten to fifteen percent of women will have PPD, 5 percent of them will need specialized inpatient care. The new unit will have specialized programming for women during pregnancy and postpartum.

Services available in the new unit include:

• Individualized assessment and treatment plans with a multidisciplinary team

• Group therapies including behavioral, psycho-educational, art and mindfulness

• Biofeedback therapy

• Mother-infant attachment therapy

• Family and partner assisted interpersonal psychotherapy

• Therapeutic yoga geared for pregnancy and postpartum women

• Protected sleep times

• Extended visiting hours to maximize positive mother-baby interaction

• Gliders for pumping and nursing in patient rooms

• Hospital grade breast pumps, refrigeration and freezer storage

• Lactation, Nutrition and Ob-Gyn consultants