Letter from the President

Dear APPPAH Members and Non-Members, Whenever I am traveling the world and lecturing about prenatal and perinatal psychology, people often ask me, "How do you know opinion X or Y to be true?" or "How do you know if birth has long term impacts?" They accept the answers when research is openly shared and critiqued. The upcoming International APPPAH Congress at Asilomar Conference Grounds provides the best answers to the questions consumers ask, conveying the highest quality empirical and scientific studies in the field, the kind that would convince anyone to embrace our field and what is has to offer. The research-based studies and conclusions are presented by world class speakers who can articulate and elaborate some of the important implications of the research for various settings like hospitals, schools, homes, birth centers, psychotherapy offices, etc. Because of the unique nature of this particular International Congress, I strongly encourage you to attend, Nov 11-14, 2010, to help us spread the word and enact world-changing interventions in our cultural institutions and homes. Goals of this year's Congress include:
  • To raise awareness of empirical research in the field of prenatal and birth (perinatal) psychology at the international level;
  • To summarize and synthesize the highest quality and most recent empirical research, vitalizing the credibility of this field;
  • To disseminate the research and stimulate discussion in support of prenatal and birth psychological services (prevention/intervention) as well as to influence social action policies;
  • To integrate within a scientific approach what we know about wisdom and intuitive knowledge, the study of consciousness, and the deep appreciation and respect we have for those we touch in our work—their experiences, their stories, their uniqueness.
A good example of APPPAH's intent to promote research-based procedures is the current project "Welcome Your Baby In With 60 Minutes, Skin-to-Skin," inspired by last year's Congress presentation by Marshall Klaus about research done by Dr. Bystrova in Russia. The research proves that early and sustained skin-to-skin contact provides much better post partum and 1st year results (physical and emotional) for both baby and mother. While violence was not an outcome variable studied by Bystrova, other research makes a clear connection between poor bonding and the propensity for violence in childhood and adulthood. There could be no better time in the history of the world to focus on prevention of violence, beginning with the prenatal and perinatal experience. At this Congress, APPPAH members Chasse and Hirsch offer communication training to support how we spread the message of skin-to-skin interventions. CEU training for practitioners is also being planned. If you have not yet responded to our member survey – please click here to do so, it takes only the fewest minutes – or contact: Jill D. Chasse , or Rochele HC Hirsch . I am looking forward to welcoming you at this ground-breaking Congress. In your Service, William R. Emerson, Ph.D. President, APPPAH