We created this web-based community for several reasons: First, we continue to be saddened by the vast percentage of individuals who do not get access to treatment (only 33% of individuals with anorexia nervosa and 6% of individuals with bulimia nervosa receive treatment). Our new site is a way to support individuals and their families with a broad scope. Second, our models of treatment delivery are rather outdated. When people need support, it is usually while they are living their daily lives, which is hard to re-create in a therapy office. Third, we strongly feel that as awful as eating disorders are, the management of them does not have to be. Rather, working on one’s eating disorder can be joyous and even fun.
The Brody Family Foundation shared our desire to provide more resources for more people, to support families in their daily lives in the setting in which one is struggling, and create a community that is restorative and sometimes even playful. Their vision was to create a web-based supportive and educational community space where information was reliable and trustworthy and that visiting the space was not traumatic, but actually healing and sometimes even silly.
While the site is not a replacement for treatment, we do hope it will be an added resource for all families. Currently on the site, families can access a variety of resources in the form of blog posts and videos, participate in therapist-moderated message boards, attend group educational sessions, and North Carolina residents can partake in online group support sessions.
We are aiming to create both effective and cost-effective ways for families to have access to therapist-led support on an ongoing basis. Our goal is ultimately to offer tele-psychiatry services for individuals in all US states and to deliver supportive services to individuals providing care across the state. As the field moves to tele-psychiatry and differing ways of delivering care, we hope this site will serve as a training resource and help with future development. Once the site is fully launched and the bugs worked out, we will begin tackling this venture state-by-state starting with North Carolina.
If you are interested in learning more or would like to check out the site, please visit us at eatingdisorders.dukehealth.org. If you know of any families who might be interested in participating in our pilot group, they can read more hereRead More