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Bedfordshire and Luton

The Lawns Resource Centre Biggleswade Beds SG18 0PT

01234 263642

9am - 5pm, Monday to Friday 

Gilbert Hitchcock House, Kimbolton Road, Bedford, MK40 2NU

Clinics for Service Users take place at Gilbert Hitchcock House.

About Us

The Perinatal Mental Health Team provides specialist care for people with mental health problems who are pregnant or in the first post-partum year, or who are considering pregnancy.

The team hold outpatient clinics in a number of locations around the county and provide joint psychiatric and obstetric appointments at the antenatal clinics at Luton and Dunstable Hospital, And Bedford Hospital.

Home visits can be arranged in late pregnancy and the early postpartum period.

What we offer

We provide specialist outpatient and community care to people who are pregnant or in their first year after having a baby. We also provide one off pre-conception counselling to people who have a history of severe mental illness and who are considering having a baby.

Your first appointment with us will either be with our consultant psychiatrist, Dr Sonia Sangha or a member of our team. This could be a Specialist Nurse, Social Worker, Occupational Therapist, or Nursery Nurse.

If we offer you further outpatient appointments these will usually be with Dr Sangha. In certain cases before you give birth we will hold a pre-birth planning meeting with you and the other professionals involved in your care to discuss how you will be supported during and after your labour.

After pregnancy then depending on the level of need you may also have home visits with one of our nurses in addition to outpatient clinic appointments.

How to Refer

You can make a self referral by filling in the online form or we do accept referrals from the following professionals:

  • Health and social care professionals
  • GPs
  • Community psychiatrists
  • Obstetricians
  • Midwives
  • Health visitors and social workers.

Confidentiality and consent

When you talk with a health professional in private you will expect that what is said remains confidential. This principle is central to trust between patients and their doctor or other health professionals. Details of your care and treatment, including anything you tell us, remains confidential and will only be shared within our multidisciplinary clinical team (which includes health and social care staff) if necessary.

All health professionals are bound by law and professional codes of conduct to this duty of confidentiality to their patients.

Bedfordshire and Luton Perinatal Service Leaflet

Making a Referral

If you live in the boroughs of Bedfordshire, City & Hackney, Newham or Tower Hamlets, and you are pregnant or have recently given birth and find you are suffering mentally or emotionally, please do not suffer alone. 

You can fill in the Referral form by clicking on the link below and it will be sent to the team in your local area who will be in touch within 7 days.

If you are experiencing a mental health crisis or emergency  and you or someone you know is in danger,  you can contact our free phone Mental Health Crisis Support teams who are available 24/7, 365 days a year. Find the team where you live here>>

Friends having coffee

Peer Support Workers

Here at ELFT we are very lucky to have perinatal peer support workers as part of our team.

Our peer support workers are individuals with lived experience and have the accredited Royal College of Pyscharitity quailification, whilst also using their experience and empathy to help support a women’s wellbeing.

If you are supported by a Peer support worker, you will feel heard and understood as your sessions will be led by an individual with lived experience the approach is more holistic than medical.

Dad, 39, Bedfordshire & Luton

As a husband it was heart breaking and scary seeing my wife so ill, some days were so dark and scary I didn't recognise the person starring back at me. The hardest part was when you are ill any other time you're told go to a doctor, but when someone has thoughts and feelings so dark and worrying you almost hide away too scared to ask for help in fear of outcome to mother and baby.

It was a fear of being judged too, and on top of this I didn't know where to go or who to call for help that felt safe and who understood or would know that these feelings and thoughts can happen to a mum, to say: 'Its okay we can guide and support you.'

We did eventually get help but later than we should of. We are so grateful for the help we received in the end. Some days are still rocky but we know now where to go for help and we are weathering any dark days together as a family.

Father and Child

Get Involved

Find a collection of all the events that are being held within the Perinatal Team across East London and Luton & Bedfordshire.

Made for Mums

It’s very common for new mums to feel overwhelmed, low and even a bit weepy in the first couple of weeks after birth. So common, in fact, that there’s actually a name for it, the baby blues. And it’s not surprising: You’re knackered, you’re sore, you’re bleeding (whether you had a caesarean or not) and, instead of being able to sleep it all off, you’re faced with the 24-hour responsibility of caring for a whole new – and right now very needy – person. While the weepiness and blues should be quite short-lived, it may take a while longer before you can ditch the overwhelmed bit.

Find out more


Parents in Mind

Local volunteers to support women experiencing emotional health difficulties in pregnancy.

Find out more
 

Postnatal mental health - Talking about mental health

Sara, Holly and Kate talk about their experience of mental health problems after pregnancy and becoming mothers.

Find out more
 

ACAS

Checking your pregnancy and maternity rights

Find out more
 

Pregnancy Sickness Support

Our national support network is for sufferers of NVP and HG and their carers, which is growing and developing constantly and making a huge difference to women all around the country. Our leaflets and website also provide a valuable resource for those suffering. We are also working hard to raise awareness about Nausea and Vomiting in pregnancy and Hyperemesis Gravidarum with the public, the media and Health Care Professionals (HCP's) and are involved in ongoing research into the cause and treatment of NVP and HG and the psychological impact for sufferers and their families.

Find out more
 

Guardian Society

Useful articles about perinatal health from the Guardian newspaper 2020-21 

Find out more
 

MadeForMums

At MadeForMums, we've got the best, and most honest, advice – from experts and from parents who've been there – on pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, and school-age children.

Find out more
 

Parents in MIND, 1st 1000 Days New Parent Support

Our mission is to support parents through the first 1,000 days, to have the best possible experience of pregnancy, birth and early parenthood.

We do this through three interconnected aims:

  • Sharing knowledge - informing parents' decisions
  • Creating networks - forging vital friendships
  • Harnessing voices - changing public policy and attitudes for good.

Find out more

Mind

Website with helpful and friendly information that explains postnatal depression and other perinatal mental health problems, including possible causes, treatments and support options. Also has information for friends and family, including support and advice for partners.

Find out more
 

Action on Postpartum Psychosis

Peer led organisation with lots of helpful info on perinatal mental health illnesses

Find out more