Psychiatrist Dr Gillian Strachan to lead mums and baby ward at Chorley and South Ribble District General Hospital

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A mental health specialist in the disorders experienced by mothers with newborns is poised to take up a post at a dedicated ward in Chorley.

Dr Gillian Strachan has 13 years of experience as a psychiatrist behind her.

She has just emerged from a pioneering £1.6m clinical and leadership scheme focusing on caring for pregnant mothers and those who have just given birth who are struggling with mental health issues.

Dr Strachan is due to lead a new mother and baby outreach unit in Chorley, which is expected to open in the Autumn, as consultant.

She said: “It’s been a very small field until now but it’s now been registered as an area that’s been underfunded.

“At least 10 per cent of women have anxiety or depression when they have a baby and we are not treating them. That can affect the mother’s relationship with the baby and have a long term impact.”

Suicide is the leading cause of death in the UK for pregnant women and for women in the first six months after giving birth.