Rep. Pitts Commends Passage of Legislation Increasing Postpartum Research
Legislation aims to find treatments for post pregnancy depression
Washington- Congress today passed H.R. 20, the Melanie Blocker-Stokes Postpartum Depression Research and Care Act. Congressman Joe Pitts (PA-16) is a cosponsor of the bill. The legislation authorizes funding for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to increase research into the cause of and treatment for postpartum depression. The bill also includes a provision that is intended to encourage research on the emotional effects of various pregnancy outcomes.
Congressman Pitts' statement follows:
"No matter what pregnancy outcome a woman experiences, there should be help made available that speaks to the emotional issues that she may be encountering.
"Like all of us, I believe that postpartum depression is a very real and serious disease. I believe it is just as important to know the effects of adoption, miscarriage, and abortion in order to properly help women."
Postpartum depression is a devastating mood disorder which affects many women before and after pregnancy. More than 400,000 women suffer postpartum depression in one form or another annually. The specific causes of postpartum depression are complex and unknown at this time.
H.R. 20 encourages NIH to expand and intensify programs to better understand the causes of, and to find a cure for, postpartum conditions and postpartum psychosis. The bill calls for the support of basic and specific research, improved diagnostic techniques, clinical research, and education programs.