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Welcome to the Mom & Mind Podcast!

This podcast focuses on the Maternal Mental Health struggles related to becoming pregnant, being pregnant, birth and early parenthood. We talk about all of the stuff that you wish someone would have told you BEFORE you tried to be pregnant or have a baby. Postpartum depression is only part of the story.

The goal of this podcast to put all of this info out in the open. There’s no need to hide these very human experiences…so many people deal with these struggles. So, the podcast provides real life stories of moms, dads and family AND we will talk with experts, leaders and advocates in the field of maternal mental health and maternal health. You deserve to be informed!!!!

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Jun 18, 2018

You may have wondered about the process required for certification in perinatal mental health. There is much confusion around any supplemental certification and in many cases, the process isn’t clear. What is clear, however, is the increasing need for certified professionals to deal with the issues faced by many new mothers and their families. 


Birdie Gunyon Meyer is an RN with a Master’s Degree in Psychology/Counseling. She is the Coordinator of the Perinatal Mood Disorders Program at Indiana University Health in Indianapolis, Indiana.


She is a Past-President and Past-Chair of Education and Training for Postpartum Support International and currently is the Director of Certification. PSI is the world’s largest non-profit organization dedicated to helping those suffering from perinatal mood and anxiety disorders. Birdie is also on the President’s Advisory Council for PSI and for the International Childbirth Education Association. She specializes in the recognition and treatment of pregnancy and postpartum mood and anxiety disorders. She is a childbirth educator and a lactation counselor and speaks frequently to communities, nursing schools, grand rounds, and conferences.


Birdie has been interviewed frequently for radio, television, and print media. She is highlighted as a PMD expert in PSI’s DVD that is shown around the country: “Healthy Mom, Happy Family: Understanding Pregnancy and Postpartum Mood and Anxiety Disorders.” Today’s show covers everything you need to know about getting certification in perinatal mental health.


Show Highlights:


  • The history of the PMD certification: the money was donated for the program and PSI took on the task of developing and overseeing the certification program
  • Subject matter experts were chosen (and they volunteered their time) to develop the core competencies for certification
  • How the “blueprint” was developed from which test questions for the exam are fornulated
  • The process of determining the questions is complete and the test should be ready by August 1, 2018
  • The certification has three tracks: psychotherapy, psychopharmacology, and affiliated professions
  • The prerequisites to sit for the exam: basic training (13-14 hrs.) OR the PSI webinar (18 hrs.) OR an equivalent approved training---AND then a third day advanced training in one of the three tracks
  • Birdie’s current task is vetting the advanced trainings around the country--these will be listed on the PSI website
  • How to contact PSI (see resources below) if you think you’ve taken a course that qualifies
  • The qualifications to sit for the exam: a Master’s Degree or beyond AND at least 2 years’ experience working with moms, families, and babies
  • The 2nd track--psychopharmacology covers “the prescribers,” primarily physicians, physicians’ assistants, and advanced practice nurses
  • Certification on this track includes 6 hours or more of advanced psychopharmacology in the perinatal mood disorder field beyond the PSI two-day online training or another approved training
  • The 3rd track is in affiliated professions that don’t fall into categories of psychotherapists or prescribers, like nurses, doulas, lactation consultants, occupational therapists, and physical therapists
  • After a two-day course or its equivalent, the requirement can be fulfilled by going to a conference and taking at least 6 hours of training there or at another approved training
  • Applicants will apply for the exam through Pearson VUE
  • The cost of the exam is $500, which covers a lifetime certification as long as the 6 hours of continuing education yearly in your track are fulfilled to keep the certification
  • A common question people ask is if they can bypass the prerequisite courses and just take the exam, especially if they have been in practice for a long time. The answer is NO, that everyone must take the same path to achieve the certification and protect its integrity