Picture of Cindy-Lee Dennis

Advancing Women’s Mental Health: Hope Inspiration Award Honours Dr. Cindy-Lee Dennis

1 February 2013

Providing hope to thousands of new mothers facing postpartum depression through research, education and treatment, Dr. Cindy-Lee Dennis has redefined modern approaches to women’s mental health.  These contributions will be honoured by the Mood Disorders Association of Ontario (MDAO) as they present Dr. Dennis with the Hope Inspiration Award on Saturday, February 9, 2013 at the 8th Annual MAD About You Awards Gala.

At the Lawrence Bloomberg Faculty of Nursing, Dr. Dennis’ research focuses on detecting, preventing and treating depression and anxiety during pregnancy and the first year following childbirth.

“Sustained mental health in mothers builds healthy families and recognition from the MDAO, who are working to give individuals and their families those tools, is an honour,” said Dr. Dennis. “This award is an opportunity to continue educating society about postpartum depression; a condition that affects 1 in 8 women after they give birth.”

Professor Dennis is also examining the impact of depression of both mothers and fathers in the first two years of a child’s life. Her goal is to develop effective parental postpartum depression interventions with the aim of preventing poor child outcomes.

The MAD About You Awards Gala, which will be attended by 450 business leaders and members of the Toronto community, celebrates mental health advances and awareness raised through the work of committed individuals. Dr. Dennis’ contributions to the field include extensive work around the prevention of postpartum depression and a telephone-based peer support program that cut the risk of develop depression by 50% among high-risk mothers. Dr. Dennis is also currently evaluating a telephone-based interpersonal psychotherapy program aimed at increasing access to effect treatment among women in rural and remote areas

Also being honoured at the gala are Lloyd Robertson, W5 Host and Chief Correspondent at CTV with the Hero Inspiration Award and Peter Kahnert, SVP, Corporate Communications and Marketing at Raymond James Ltd., with the Pillar of Hope Inspiration Award.