Mara Powell

Statement from Dr. Terry Brooks, executive director of Kentucky Youth Advocates

LOUISVILLE, KY – Parents need to be healthy, have access to the care and services they need, and have the necessary resources to meet basic needs throughout their pregnancy, birth, and after welcoming a new child. And the reality is, at least 1 in 8 women experience postpartum depression, which impacts the growth and development of their baby, too.

Effectively treating and managing maternal depression and other mental health disorders starts with identifying those challenges early. Senate Bill 135, sponsored by Senator Shelley Funke Frommeyer, seeks to ensure just that. The bill, which passed the Kentucky Senate today, would require the Cabinet for Health and Family Services to make publicly available information and an assessment tool on postpartum depression and other related mental health disorders, as well as develop and implement a panel aimed at improving the quality of prevention and treatment of perinatal mental health disorders.

In Kentucky, over 90% of maternal deaths are considered preventable and more than 25% have mental health conditions as a contributing factor. SB 135 can make a real difference in those prevention efforts and improve outcomes for new parents and their babies. We thank Senator Funke Frommeyer for championing this legislation and the Kentucky Senate for their unanimous support of its passage today.

Stay up-to-date on Blueprint for Kentucky’s Children priorities and other bills that are good for kids on our Kentucky General Assembly Bill Tracker.


About Kentucky Youth Advocates
Kentucky Youth Advocates believes all children deserve to be safe, healthy, and secure. As THE independent voice for Kentucky’s children, we work to ensure policymakers create investments and policies that are good for children. Learn more at