Tuesday, April 7, 2009

GH Partners with PSI for PSA

GENERAL HOSPITAL has partnered with Postpartum Support International (PSI) to feature a public service announcement (PSA) on postpartum depression, it was announced today by Brian Frons, president, Daytime, Disney-ABC Television Group and Birdie Gunyon Meyer, RN, MA, president, PSI.

The informative PSA will air immediately following the Thursday, April 16 episode featuring the ongoing storyline centered on Dr. Robin Scorpio (Kimberly McCullough) and her battle with the illness following the birth or her daughter, Emma. During May sweeps, she will finally come to terms with the affliction, deciding to seek professional help, and later join a support group that will be cast with real-life mothers who had postpartum depression.

Postpartum depression is experienced by nearly one million women in the United States each year. The PSA will include information on the symptoms of postpartum depression, as well as how to contact Postpartum Support International to get help. It will remind new mothers and family members that no one is to blame for this illness, and that it is a treatable medical disease.

"As our viewers expect to be entertained each day, they also want to be educated when an important medical issue is integrated into storyline. I am sure some members of our audience are either directly affected with post partum depression or know someone who is, and we believe it is important to direct our audience to the organizations that can help them," said Jill Farren Phelps, executive producer, GENERAL HOSPITAL.

"PSI is honored that the producers and writers of GENERAL HOSPITAL felt the topic of postpartum depression was an important one to share with their audience," said Meyer. "Millions of women's lives can be saved by ending the fear and isolation of sufferers and offering access to treatment resources. We are grateful to ABC Daytime following up with a public service announcement and helping to raise awareness of what is truly the most common complication of childbirth."

Meyer served as a medical consultant for the postpartum depression storyline, and the public service announcement was written by PSI board member Katherine Stone.

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