Continuum of Care Approach to Anorexia Recovery
Walden Behavioral Care is the only eating disorder treatment facility in New England that offers the full continuum of care for anorexia recovery, from intensive inpatient care to outpatient programs. By offering this complete continuum of treatment for anorexia recovery, we can not only meet the needs of all patients who require treatment, we can also change treatment as the patient progresses toward anorexia recovery. This approach not only encourages the patient to progress, it also helps ensure that insurance benefits cover more of the treatment needed to achieve anorexia recovery.
Walden Behavioral Care is also the only facility in New England to offer anorexia recovery treatment for patients as young as 12, and males as well as females. While young women continue to be the population most likely to have anorexia, a growing number of males and young people also have anorexia.
The Journey Toward Anorexia Recovery
Based on an in-depth assessment, we will determine whether patients should receive inpatient care, residential care, partial hospitalization or intensive outpatient treatment for anorexia. Each program provides different levels of treatment and progressively brings the patient closer to anorexia recovery.
Inpatient Care For The Treatment of Anorexia
Inpatient care is for those whose anorexia recovery requires that they receive 24-hour acute care and supervision. Patients whose anorexia is severe enough that they require IMC receive continuous monitoring of their condition, ongoing meal planning, therapy and support, and the security needed to ensure that they follow the treatment regime. The purpose of inpatient care is to achieve medical and behavioral stabilization and acceptance by the patient of the need to change disordered behaviors.
Residential Care For The Treatment of Anorexia
Anorexia recovery is most likely when residential treatment is part of the continuum of care, rather than a separate, all-encompassing program.
In the past, residential care was used for addiction treatment, but has been widely viewed as inefficient because residential programs typically prescribed the same length of stay for all patients. People respond differently to treatment and are at varying levels of anorexia recovery, so the same treatment won’t work for everyone.
One benefit of residential living is that it begins to integrate patients back into the community. They may dine at restaurants, go shopping and cook. Residential settings typically are comfortable and inviting. This can aid in anorexia recovery by putting patients in a more positive state of mind.
Patients in a residential setting develop and solidify healthy eating and living patterns with an orientation toward anorexia recovery. They develop intermediate range goals and plans, as well as behavioral goals and coping skills. Patients at this level also continue to meet DSM IV criteria for inpatient care.
Partial Hospitalization For The Treatment of Anorexia
As anorexia recovery progresses, patients can move into a partial hospitalization program. This treatment is also appropriate for new patients whose path to anorexia recovery is less severe.
The treatment focus of Walden’s partial hospitalization is on gaining awareness of the triggers and functions of eating-disordered behavior, learning new skills and strategies that are practiced during off-treatment hours, and developing relationships with others. Participants gain an understanding of their emotions and learn to deal with the challenges they will face in day-to-day living.
Treatment includes case management, management of medication, nutrition counseling, and individual, family and group therapy. Staff supervises a meal a day and two snacks. Case managers conduct individual and family therapy, and help establish and coordinate care with an outpatient team.
Patients develop and reinforce coping strategies for healthy living. Given the individual’s re-integration into an outpatient setting, relapse prevention is especially important and much attention is given to planning for prevention.
Intensive Outpatient Care For The Treatment of Anorexia
Intensive outpatient treatment of anorexia begins only when patients are ready to support themselves. They must have control over their eating disorder and be able to live at home. At this point, they are typically working or attending school, and are regularly making decisions for themselves.
The program is for individuals who are medically stable, without acute psychiatric symptoms and actively working with an outpatient treatment team. Intensive outpatient care is designed for individuals who are making a transition from a higher level of care, or patients who require more support and treatment than their outpatient team alone can provide.
Intensive outpatient care provides a therapeutic safety net for patients in anorexia recovery. It is there to provide support until the patient is ready to continue with standard outpatient treatment. Participants typically are functioning well, but can benefit from the structure and support of the program, and from connecting with others who have similar needs.
Program hours are 5 to 8 p.m., Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.
To learn more about Walden Behavioral Care’s programs for anorexia recovery, contact Walden at 781-647-6727 or online.