Hotline helps families cope with pregnancy during COVID-19
Pregnancy brings both joy and stress. However, COVID-19 makes it more difficult. The new YWCA hotline service hopes to provide assistance to families that have a birth plan, are expecting a child or have a new-born child.
In 2019, the Department of Health found out that around 10% of postnatal women suffered from postpartum depression. The figure climbed to one in every seven pregnant women, according to the research done by HKU in 2020. COVID-19 has definitely made expectant parents anxious about pregnancy in the past two years. For example, they keep themselves at home more often to reduce the risk of catching coronavirus, and worry about any negative effects of COVID-19 vaccines. Prevention measures might separate pregnant women from her family. Information proliferation also makes it hard to differentiate fake news from the real ones. These concerns together with common discomforts during pregnancy bring great pressure.
The new hotline service provides counsel to couples in need. Since the launch in late March to early May, over 30 requests for assistance have been received. Over 80% of the help seekers score 13 or above in Edinburgh Perinatal / Postnatal Depression Scale, which indicates a high likelihood of depression. Some of them are even suicidal. One of the cases was a pregnant woman who have been admitted to hospital because of medical problem with the fetus. She felt uneasy because of fear and the lack of support. The conversation with the counsellor helped her gain confidence back on pregnancy and delivery.
People nowadays like seeking advices online. However, disorganised information might confuse, or even disturb oneself more. YWCA has a long history of assisting couples to cope with pregnancy, and has been offering professional advices to pregnant women, dads-to-be, and new parents. If you are having troubles and want a chat with us, fill in the questionnaire, and our counsellors will get back to you soon.
There are three seminars about pregnancy in the coming months. Feel free to register via the links below. (All will be conducted in Cantonese)