In a recent paper we investigated the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on pregnant women. In collaboration with colleagues at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and Penn Psychiatry, we explored the disproportionate impact that the pandemic has had on the well-being of vulnerable populations in the US, including Black people. The impact on pregnant women is of special concern for the intrauterine and postnatal development of their offspring. We found that Black pregnant women reported greater likelihood of having their employment negatively impacted, more concerns about a lasting economic burden, and more worries about their prenatal care, birth experience, and post-natal needs. Resilience factors, including self-reliance and emotion regulation, were higher in Black women as well. Racial disparities related to COVID-19 in pregnant women can advance the understanding of pregnancy related stressors and improve early identification of mental health needs.
Relevant peer-reviewed publications
- Waller, R., Kornfield, S.L., White, L.W., Chaiyachati, B.H., Barzilay, R., Njoroge, W.F., Parish-Morris, J., Duncan, A., Himes, M.M., Rodriguez, Y., Seidlitz, J., Riis, V., Burris, H.H., Gur, R.E., & Elovitz, M.A. (2022). Clinician-reported childbirth outcomes, patient-reported childbirth trauma, and risk for postpartum depression. Archives of Women’s Mental Health, 25, 985-993
- Njoroge, W.F.M., White, L.K., Waller, R., Forkpa, M, Himes, M.M., Morgan, K., Seidlitz, J., Chaiyachati, B.H., Barzilay, R., Kornfield, S.L., Parish-Morris, J., Rodriguez, Y., Riis, V., Burris, H.H., Elovitz, M.A., & Gur, R.E. (2022). Association of COVID-19 and endemic systemic racism with postpartum anxiety and depression among Black birthing individuals. JAMA Psychiatry, 79, 600-609
- Kornfield, S.L., Johnson, R.L., Hantsoo, L., Brooks, R., Waller, R., Sammel, M.D., & Epperson, C.N. (2022). Engagement in and benefits of a short-term, brief psychotherapy intervention for PTSD during pregnancy. Frontiers in Psychiatry, 13, 882429
- Kornfield, S.L., White, L.K., Waller, R., Njoroge, W., Barzilay, R., Chaiyachati, B.H., Himes, M. M., Rodriguez, Y., Riis, V., Simonette, K., Elovitz, E.A., and Gur, R.E. (2021). Risk and resilience factors influencing postpartum depression and mother-infant bonding during COVID-19. Health Affairs, 40, 1566-1574
- Gur, R., White, L., Waller, R., Barzilay, R., Moore, T., Kornfield, S., Njoroge, W., Chaiyachati, B., Parish-Morris, J., Maayan, L., Himes, M., Laney, N., Simonette, K., Duncan, A., Riis, V., & Elovitz, M. (2020). The Disproportionate Burden of the COVID-19 Pandemic Among Pregnant Black Women. Psychiatry Research, 293, 113475