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Mental health and psychosocial support (MHPSS) during the perinatal period is a global issue as the mental health of the mother directly impacts her children. This period is characterized by high risk of com­mon perinatal mental disorders – with one in six pregnant women and one in five postpartum women impacted by a mental health and psychosocial concern during pregnancy or in the first postnatal year. Women in humanitarian settings experience poorer mental health outcomes due to compounded stress and crisis-related factors including nutritional deficiencies, lack of protection and autonomy, GBV, decreased access to family planning services, separation from social support, and lack of access to MHPSS services. These risks have only worsened in the context of COVID-19 as health systems are at or over capacity, with a disproportionate impact on MNH outcomes in LMICs and settings with limited resources.

Collaborating for Maternal Mental Wellbeing: Technical Brief on Perinatal Mental Health in Humanitarian Settings from the IAWG Maternal and Newborn Health Sub Working Group aims to provide an overview of MHPSS perinatal mental health in emergency response, present relevant resources, suggestions for improving collaboration and provision of perinatal mental health, examples of service delivery collaboration, and culminate with a call to action to progress momentum for peri­natal mental health.