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Supports to help expecting and new parents anxious about coronavirus
The wide-ranging impacts of coronavirus (COVID-19) are being felt in communities everywhere. With so much news coverage focusing on the spread of the virus and how it is affecting people it is not surprising that many across Australia and the rest of the world are feeling anxious and distressed.
Expecting and new parents are particularly vulnerable. It is especially hard at this time to know how to balance the joy and excitement of pregnancy or having a new baby with the fear caused by this unprecedented global pandemic.
PANDA therefore remains committed to working as hard as ever to support the mental health of expecting and new parents feeling distressed through this difficult period.
We have adapted our operations to ensure the continued and uninterrupted operation of our National Helpline and the ongoing provision of our expert and accessible information and resources so any expecting or new parent who is feeling mentally vulnerable is able to access support when they need it.
We have moved all PANDA team members offsite and the team is now working remotely, including our Helpline counsellors. PANDA’s National Helpline still continues to operate (see below for more details). Our PANDA office is closed however business operations still continue with the same contact details as before. If you call our office we won’t be able to answer directly but please leave a message and we will get back to you.
We are also looking at ways to provide our expert health professional training and community education sessions via online platforms. Despite the unprecedented scenario we are living through, this critical information still needs to be shared with the community so those struggling with mental health challenges are supported. While many face-to-face gatherings are still not an option, we remain committed to finding new and effective digital ways to deliver these sessions without being in the same room as our participants.
Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic PANDA has experienced a significant increase in calls to our National Helpline from expecting and new parents worried about the coronavirus, on top of those who call for other reasons. This at times impacts our ability to take your call in the moment and may mean we have to call you back a little later.
If you are an expecting or new parent and experiencing increased pressures and emotions that impact on your ability to cope day to day – whether in relation to the coronavirus or any other of the many challenges of becoming a parent – please know that the Helpline is still available to support you. If you are unable to get through at first you are welcome to leave a message and we will do our best to get back to you in a timely fashion.
PANDA’s National Perinatal Anxiety & Depression Helpline
1300 726 306
Monday – Friday, 9am – 7.30pm AEST/AEDT
For immediate crisis support call Lifeline on 13 11 14 and in an emergency, always call triple zero (000).
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