Since 2007 the UCSF Eating Disorders Program of San Francisco has offered young people up to the age of 25 comprehensive programming geared towards those who struggle with anorexia, bulimia and emotional eating disorders. There are both inpatient and outpatient treatment tracks that provide medical and psychiatric services using evidence-based treatment models along with medication management. Both the adolescent and adult programs are individualized and client-focused to include educational and counseling services.
Treatment and Staff
Clients who are being admitted to the inpatient program do so in order to obtain stabilization because they are dangerously underweight or are having heart troubles. Clients reside in double occupancy hospital rooms and receive an individualized meal plan along with fully supervised meals. They stay until they are well enough to continue on to the outpatient programs.
There is an assessment process with the client, his or her family and a clinician to put together a treatment plan using Family Based Treatment approaches. The plan establishes each client’s goals along with medication schedules, and usually lasts between 10 and 12 months. During this time clients participate in a number of therapy sessions, psychoeducational classes and nutritional counseling. There is also a focus on medical issues during all stages of treatment along with monitoring for any physical changes.
There are a variety of therapy approaches that are used in the eating disorder program. Of the family therapies, there are Structural Family Therapy methods that address interactions, roles and conflicts within the family unit to identify patterns that may have led or aided an eating disorder. The family based structure puts parents or guardians in charge of reducing the control that is centered around food and the client, meaning taking over the control of food intake and planning, until weight restoration is achieved. Once that takes place the family returns the control to the client and helps them focus on managing their eating disorder and learning new life and coping skills. These methods are, of course, geared towards the younger clientele in these programs.
CBT is the other treatment approach most commonly utilized for adults while trying to manage their symptoms. CBT is mainly used for clients who are anorexic, though it is used for those struggling with bulimia. There are usually 20 to 25 therapy sessions that are in both an individual and group setting. These focus on addressing the feelings surrounding food and having clients learn how to take the fear out of eating while reducing their intake restrictions. The adult track requires much more self monitoring and self reliance while assessing their own triggers and participating in weekly weigh ins. These treatments can also include medication and behavior modification therapy.
These programs are all provided by a multidisciplinary team of clinicians who specialize in eating disorders. The team is comprised of medical doctors, psychiatrists, nurses, LCSW, and nutritionists.
The UCSF Eating Disorder Program uses tried and true treatment methods along with holistic approaches in order to provide an individualized treatment experience within a safe and comfortable atmosphere. These programs are facilitated through highly experienced and trained professionals who offer caring and supportive guidance for the client and their loved ones.
San Francisco- Mental Health Services
401 Parnassus Ave
San Francisco, CA 94143
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