West Tyrone Sinn Féin -- Building an Ireland of Equals

Boyle seeking enhanced 'Eating Disorder' services for Strabane

Published: 14 February, 2013

West Tyrone MLA Michaela Boyle has written to the Western Health and Social Care Trust requesting an update on the plans for the provision of services for people with eating disorders within the Strabane District Council Area. The Trust have adopted a tiered approach to the development of eating disorder services and the overall intention of this comprehensive approach is to enable each individual and as appropriate, his/her carers and family, to receive the level and intensity of care required at a local level. The Trust is currently working to develop an enhanced specialist team that will be accommodated centrally within the Trust. This enhanced team will include an additional therapist, an occupational therapist and a specialist dietician. It is envisaged that this service enhancement will provide more intensive person centred community treatment and day care which will further address the clinical needs of parents and their families. Through a dedicated facility, the team will be better placed to provide practical assistance with budgeting, shopping and cooking. It is also planned to have a 'body image' room and a self-help resource that will include a range of literature and CDs. West Tyrone MLA Michaela Boyle stated, 'The overview of the planned enhancements for the eating disorder team is to be welcomed. For too long now sufferers of eating disorders and their families have had to travel long distances for specialist care. Within the North there has been increasing concern amongst medical professionals and voluntary groups regarding the services for the treatment of patients with Eating Disorders and help, support and signposting for the patient's families. In line with other Western societies there has been an increase in the number of patients suffering from these disorders over the past two decades. More recently, the age of onset has been falling leading to an increase in the numbers of children and young adolescents presenting to Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Services. Access to services is a fundamental right and I will be seeking to ensure that these enhanced services will be located in the Strabane District Area and will go in some way to alleviating the concerns of patients and families within the wider West Tyrone area.