Brooke Shields promotes postpartum depression legislation

imageOn Friday, Brooke Shields joined Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) and Rep. Bobby Rush (D-IL) in promoting the MOTHERS Act, a bill to combat postpartum depression through research, screening, treatment and prevention. Also included in this momentous event were former New Jersey First Lady Mary Jo Codey, Carol Blocker and other leading advocates.

"Moving forward on legislation to address postpartum depression would be a terrific Mother's Day gift for the hundreds of thousands of new mothers who are struggling with this serious condition," said Sen. Menendez. "We must attack postpartum depression on all fronts with education, screening, support, and research so that new moms can feel supported and safe rather than scared and alone. I would like to thank Representative Rush for his leadership, as well as Mary Jo Codey, Brooke Shields, Carol Blocker and the other leading advocates in attendance for their commitment to beating this often debilitating condition."

It is estimated that postpartum depression (PPD) affects from 10 to 20 percent of new mothers. In the United States, there may be as many as 800,000 new cases of postpartum conditions each year. It is about time that more people get behind these new Moms and support them. Many of the women here at BlogHer are familiar with the agony of PPD.

The Mothers Act creates funding for educating and screening new moms for the condition. Brooke Shields, well known for her battle with post partum depression after the birth of her daughter, went to Capitol Hill today to introduce the bill.

Actress and mother Brooke Shields says, "I was incapable of holding or looking at or kissing or smelling or singing to my perfect tiny little baby."

The American College of Nurse-Midwives (ACNM), the nation's oldest women's health care association, is proud to support "The Mom's Opportunity To Access Help, Education, Research, and Support for Postpartum Depression (MOTHERS) Act," introduced last week by Senators Robert Menendez (D-NJ) and Richard Durbin (D-IL).

imageThe MOTHERS Act will ensure that new moms and their families are educated about postpartum depression, screened for symptoms, and provided with essential services. In addition, it will increase research into the causes, diagnoses and treatments for postpartum depression.

We need your support to help this legislation become law! Ask your Senator to co-sponsor the MOTHER'S ACT (S. 3529)—call (202) 224-3121 or visit the Senate Website to contact your Senators.

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BlogHer Contributing Editor Jenn Satterwhite also blogs at Mommy Needs Coffee, Mommybloggers and Aggroqueen.

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