Beth Lewis, Ph.D., associate professor in the School of Kinesiology, has been awarded a three-year $900,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services’ Maternal and Child Health Bureau (MCHB). The grant, “Exercise Intervention for Preventing Perinatal Depression among Low-Income Women,” will examine the influence of exercise and wellness support on depression among pregnant and postpartum women.
According to MCHB publications, perinatal (the period during and after pregnancy) depression affects approximately 14 to 25 percent of pregnant women and is used to describe a range of conditions including, prenatal depression, postpartum blues, postpartum depression, and postpartum psychosis.
Previously, Lewis was awarded a $1.46 million grant, “Effect of Exercise and Wellness Interventions on Preventing Postpartum Depression,” from the National Institute of Mental Health. Results from this research found that higher levels of physical activity were related to fewer depressive symptoms.
The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Maternal Child Health Bureau’s (MCHB) mission is to provide leadership, in partnership with key stakeholders, to promote, protect and improve the physical and mental health, safety and well-being of women, children and their families across the nation.