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DAWN: Depression: an exploratory parallel-group randomised controlled trial of Antenatal guided self-help for WomeN

DawnDAWN is a randomised controlled trial in which there is a 50:50 chance of women receiving Guided Self Help rather than care as usual. Guided Self-Help is a brief treatment shown to be effective in non-pregnant groups: we will modify it for pregnant women, aiming to provide an economical and effective way of providing prompt treatment not involving the risks of medication. 

For the trial we are looking for women who are:

  • Pregnant and aged 16+
  • Currently experiencing depression
  • Not in psychological therapy
  • Not taking antidepressants 

Recruitment is now closed.

The study protocol has been published and can be accessed here.  

To request an electronic copy of the Guided Self-Help workbook, please email 

Who is involved?

Our team comprises leading experts in perinatal mental health, health economics, statistics, midwifery, social sciences, service user and health services research.  

HSPR members include:  Professor Louise M. Howard (Chief Investigator), Professor in Women’s Mental Health and Consultant Perinatal Psychiatrist at the South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust; Professor Sarah Byford and Professor Diana Rose.

Other investigators include: Professor Myra Hunter, Institute of Psychiatry; Professor Jeannette Milgrom, University of Melbourne; Dr Susan Pawlby, IOPPN. For more information contact


The ESMI programme is funded by the National Institute for Health Research's Programme Grants for Applied Research (PGfAR) Programme.

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