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news: eating disorder treatment team based in belfast, maine

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Title/Topic: Eating Disorder Treatment Team Based in Belfast, Maine
Posted On: 12/2/2007
Belfast, Maine, Dec 2 2007 ( – Eleven Maine communities, including Belfast, have teams in place trained to provide coordinated health-care treatment for people with eating disorders.

Teams consisting of at least one medical practitioner, therapist, and registered dietitian are also in Augusta, Blue Hill, Calais, Camden, Farmington, Lewiston, South Portland, and Waterville, and at Bowdoin College in Brunswick, and Long Creek Youth Development Center in South Portland.

Prior to the establishment of the teams, people with eating disorders sometimes found it difficult to identify providers to work together to address this complex problem. The coordinated teams will establish a model of care that heretofore has not existed in many areas of Maine, especially rural areas.

The teams are part of the Eating Disorders Learning Collaborative, which provides initial training and ongoing performance improvement and support related to best practices for treating anorexia, bulimia, binge eating and eating disorders not otherwise specified. The teams provide services to children, teens, young adults and others with eating disorders.

The initial two-day training program was in October, and Learning Sessions on issues that teams have identified will be offered by expert consultants six times a year via Web conferencing. Team members also have access to ongoing consultation with the New England Eating Disorders Program at Mercy Hospital.

The three-year project will add at least 10 teams per year, resulting in the formation of more than 30 interdisciplinary teams to provide services throughout Maine. This network of care providers is expected to result in earlier and more effective treatment and help prevent more serious and more expensive complications.

In addition to establishing and training treatment teams, the Eating Disorders Learning Collaborative seeks to raise awareness of the problem of eating disorders in Maine and develop a training for Gatekeepers who might identify and refer people at risk.

This project is a joint effort of Medical Care Development, Inc., a not-for-profit organization formed in 1966 to improve health systems in Maine, and Mainely Girls, a not-for-profit organization founded in 1996 to work with rural communities to assist them to focus on girls’ needs in a preventive and proactive manner and to work on the state level to bring about positive change for girls.

Support for this project has come from The Betterment Fund, The Davis Family Foundation, The Hilda and Preston Davis Foundation, The J. M. Hopwood Charitable Trust, and The Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Department of Health and Human Services.


For more information, contact Mainely Girls at or (207) 230-0170.

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