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St. Catherine of Siena Advocates for Postpartum Depression Awareness in Suffolk County

May 4th, 2015

On Friday, May 1st, St. Catherine of Siena Medical Center joined Suffolk County Legislator Kate Browning to raise awareness about Perinatal Mood Disorders Awareness Month, recognized this May in Suffolk County, at the Touro Law Center in Central Islip.

In 2009, County Legislator Kate Browning introduced legislation that was approved into law designating May as Perinatal Mood Disorders Awareness Month in Suffolk County. More than 4,000 families in Suffolk County are affected annually, which prompted Legislator Browning to spread awareness and education about perinatal mood disorders to protect the health and well-being of all its residents, particularly expecting and recent mothers and their families.  

Together with Legislator Browning, The Postpartum Resource Center of New York and Suffolk County Office of Women’s Services, the Suffolk Perinatal Coalition and the Suffolk County Department of Health, Good Samaritan Hospital and St. Catherine of Siena Medical Center, joined together to help spread vital awareness. Mothers-to-be, current mothers, fathers, family members, family supporters and the community were able to view two films,  “This Isn't What I Expected: More than Just the Baby Blues” and the critically acclaimed documentary “Dark  Side of the Full Moon”,  followed by a group discussion for each screening.

Each year in New York State alone, more than 50,000 mothers and fathers will experience a perinatal mood disorder and those parents need to know they are not alone, not to blame, and can overcome with help. Perinatal mood and anxiety disorders are common health concerns for mothers and fathers, and unfortunately, many suffering from these medical issues.

“This is a powerful event and we are happy to partner with these organizations to further raise awareness,” said St. Catherine’s Director of Maternity Services Neila Hernandez. “We look for every opportunity to partner and help educate mothers, fathers and their families.”

St. Catherine’s Maternity Department offers a free Mothers' Circle of Hope: Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorder Support Group. Please call (631) 870-3444 to register or email

Photo Caption (L-R): Good Samaritan Hospital Perinatal Educator Karen Kaplan, Executive Director of the Postpartum Resource Center of New York  Sonia Murdock, Suffolk County Department of Health Services Commissioner Dr. James Tomarken, Suffolk County Legislator Kate Browning, St. Catherine of Siena’s Nursing Lactation Coordinator Jennifer Giordano, St. Catherine of Siena’s Director of Maternity Services Neila Hernandez, Ms. Suffolk County, America and Postpartum Resource Center Volunteer Bridget Croteau and Author and Volunteer at Postpartum Resource Center of New York Wendy Isnardi.