In 2004, New York State passed a law to create and fund a statewide network of service providers to enhance comprehensive, coordinated and continuous specialized treatment for eating disorders. The Comprehensive Care Centers for Eating Disorders, a combined effort of three regional Centers of Excellence, was formed as a result of this initiative.
The three regional centers (Western NY, Northeast NY, and Metro NY) cover all of New York State and are considered models of care. Here in New York City, the Metro NY CCCED is comprised of the New York State Psychiatric Institute, NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital, and Cohen Children’s Hospital. Western NY CCCED is based at the University of Rochester, School of Nursing and Golisano Children’s Hospital at Strong Memorial Hospital, and Northeast CCCED is coordinated by Albany Medical Center.
Among its goals are outreach and education, which include promoting access to information, referral and treatment services on eating disorders for consumers, families, health care providers and insurers, and providing community education, prevention, and entry into care.
While each Center hosts and participates in ongoing educational activities, this year, with generous funding from NY State, the CCCEDs organized a conference on October 4, 2019, in Syracuse NY: Eating Disorders: How to Recognize, Treat and Coordinate Care. Our goal was to reach providers of various backgrounds in relatively underserved areas who may not have regular access to eating disorders specialty training.
The day was filled with information: the medical directors from each center along with key personnel presented on topics ranging from defining eating disorders, medical complications of eating disorders, how to help adolescents with eating issues, and adult-specific issues. A working lunch allowed participants to learn about Project ECHO, a web-based learning community for providers. Afternoon breakout sessions included topics on body positivity, athletes with eating disorders and how families can best work with professionals based on a personal account from a parent.
Drumlins, part of Syracuse University, provided an excellent venue for the 250 people who attended. Many disciplines were represented, including social workers, dieticians, physicians, college counselors, and coaches. Display tables of resources lined the hallways, breakfast and lunch were provided and allowed us to stay on schedule, and practitioners were able to receive CME and CEUs.
Informal feedback was positive and we eagerly await additional feedback from evaluation forms that are being tabulated.