Couple-based interpersonal psychotherapy for first-time parents: A process evaluation

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review


Purpose: First-time parents have an increased risk of depression during the transition to parenthood, which has
long-termadverse effect on the infant development. Interpersonal psychotherapy (IPT) has been shown to effectively
reduce postnatal depression. The objectives of this studywere to explore first-time parents' perceptions of
a couple-based IPT programand to identify positive and negative influences on the effectiveness of the intervention
through a process evaluation.
Design and methods: A process evaluation was conducted as part of a randomized controlled trial of a couplebased
IPT program. A program satisfaction questionnaire was used to assess the participants' satisfaction with
the structure, process and outcome of the program. Semi-structured telephone interviews were conducted
with a purposive sample of 44 first-time parents who had received the couple-based IPT. The interview data were analyzed by thematic analysis.
Results: The qualitative findings showed that the parents perceived couple-based IPT as useful for enhancing their
interpersonal relationship, emotional control and competence in child care. The successful implementation of the
couple-based IPT programwas influenced by its delivery by midwives, the interactive lessons used to engage the
participants, the close fit of the teaching contents to the needs of first-time parents and the flexible program
schedule and delivery mode.
Conclusions: The process evaluation indicates that couple-based IPT is an acceptable and feasible intervention for
first-time parents to facilitate a healthy transition to parenthood.
Practice implications: The couple-based IPT can be used as an adjunct to standard care to promote perinatal
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-8
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Pediatric Nursing
Publication statusPublished - 27 Jun 2023


  • coupled-based interpersonal psychotherapy
  • parents
  • process evaluation


Dive into the research topics of 'Couple-based interpersonal psychotherapy for first-time parents: A process evaluation'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this