Journal Article

NICE guideline for antenatal and postnatal mental health: the health visitor role


When the NICE guideline for antenatal and postnatal mental health was updated in December 2014, the intervention delivered by health visitors, described as ‘listening visits’, was not included in the recommendations as one of a number of possible, evidence-based options of support. Maternal mental health is one of the six high impact areas designated as a fundamental component of health visiting practice. This review demonstrates how health visitors are uniquely placed to fulfill many of the recommendations in the updated NICE guideline and have a pivotal part to play in prevention, early identification, prompt treatment and improved outcomes for mothers, their partners and their babies. The review also highlights the challenges of delivering the recommended levels of perinatal mental health information, advice and support amidst budget cuts, reorganization of services and conflicting policy priorities.

Attached files


Lowenhoff, Catherine
Appleton, Jane V.
Davison-Fischer, Jan
Pike, Nick

Oxford Brookes departments

Faculty of Health and Life Sciences\Department of Psychology, Social Work and Public Health


Year of publication: 2017
Date of RADAR deposit: 2017-11-06

This document is the Accepted Manuscript version of a Published Work that appeared in final form in Journal of Health Visiting, copyright © MA Healthcare, after peer review and technical editing by the publisher. To access the final edited and published work see

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This RADAR resource is the Accepted Manuscript of NICE guideline for antenatal and postnatal mental health: the health visitor role


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