EHN Canada’s new Eating Disorders Program, launching March 1, is helping those turned away by public healthcare options

Toronto, ON – Bellwood Health Services, part of the EHN Canada nationwide network of premier treatment centres, is offering a new program designed to treat both eating disorders and concurrent mental health and addiction disorders.

The program launches March 1, 2021, and not a moment too soon for those who have felt neglected during this pandemic, highlighting the increasing need for more mental health services for vulnerable populations.

Eating Disorder Group Therapy
EHN Canada’s new Eating Disorders Program launches March 1, 2021 (CNW Group/EHN Canada)

With COVID-19 restrictions and increasing resource demands on hospitals everywhere, many day programs that were previously provided in the hospital setting have had to be reduced or temporarily shut down, resulting in growing wait lists within the public sector. While many hospitals are trying to supplement these programs through online platforms, patients who would have typically gotten 40 hours of treatment each week are, for example, now only receiving up to two 90-minute sessions per week.

It is simply not enough to effectively treat people dealing with an eating disorder like anorexia nervosa or bulimia nervosa, especially when they are forced to stay home and face many triggers alone.

Where are all those suffering with eating disorders going? Patients are looking to facilities such as Bellwood, knocking on our doors asking for comprehensive concurrent eating disorders treatment.

Its availability and willingness to take in patients is not the only thing that sets the new Bellwood Eating Disorders Program apart from others. It will also be one of the few programs in Canada to treat co-occurring conditions such as substance abuse and trauma, along with eating disorders.

Bellwood Executive Director Terri Marques explains, “The unique part of this program is that we are marrying the treatment of addictions and eating disorders. In Canada and around the world, it is most typical to either do one or the other.”

Why is this so essential?

She continues, “When you fix either the addiction or the eating disorder, the other can suddenly get more activated. It is a desperate need to cope with life. At Bellwood, we want to do both, attacking both issues at the same time and treating the whole person, instead of compartmentalizing care. We have over 35 years of experience working with addiction. We are leveraging that knowledge into the Eating Disorders Program.”

Bellwood’s Eating Disorders Program will include:

  • Evidence-based methodologies, including Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) and Dialectical Behavioural Therapy (DBT), applied through group and one-on-one therapy
  • An experienced team consisting of physicians, psychiatrists, registered dieticians, and mental health clinicians
  • Meal supervision
  • Nutritional rehabilitation and psychoeducation
  • Patient specific physical health and wellness activities
  • Family therapy

This program is right for patients who:

  • Are 17 years of age or older
  • Meet current DSM-V criteria for an Eating Disorder
  • Require structure and support in order to make changes to their eating, exercise, and/or purging behaviours
  • Have a BMI of 15 or more

The program is set to launch at Bellwood Health Services in Toronto, ON and “it’s going to be life-saving, improve quality of life, and help individuals regain control of their lives,” Marques assures.

For more information about EHN Canada’s new Eating Disorders Program, please visit:

https://www.edgewoodhealthnetwork.com/locations/inpatient-centres/bellwood/programs/concurrent-inpatient-eating-disorder-and-addiction-treatment/

About EHN Canada

As a trusted leader in addiction and mental health services, EHN Canada is committed to increasing access to high quality treatment for all Canadians. With facilities across the country, EHN Canada is the nation’s largest private network of residential, outpatient, and online programs. We have over 75 years of collective experience in treating mental health, trauma/PTSD, and substance use disorders.

Whether in-person or virtual, each of our treatment centres is designed for healing, including a dedication to medical excellence, clinicians who provide compassionate and non-judgmental care, and an inclusive community of peers and alumni. Our team of doctors, psychiatrists, nurses, psychotherapists, social workers, occupational therapists, and support counsellors has expertise in treating complex clinical diagnoses and concurrent conditions.

Moreover, we value long-term outcomes and recovery for our patients and their loved ones, which is why supportive services like our Aftercare and Family Programs are so important. Our recognition and understanding of the challenges faced by patients today means we provide treatment that is personalized, effective, and sustainable.

Safety precautions against COVID-19

COVID-19 should not prevent someone from being able to receive life-saving addiction and mental health treatment. Rest assured that we are taking every step possible to protect our current patient population from contracting the infection.

Our facilities have policies and protocols in place to protect patients, including screening new patients, limiting visitors, and moving aftercare groups to online meetings.

Continue to our action plan to see what we are doing to protect our patients from COVID-19.