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"I'm truly free from my eating disorder": Emerging adults' experiences of FREED, an early intervention service model and care pathway for eating disorders

Potterton, R; Austin, A; Flynn, M; Allen, K; Lawrence, V; Mountford, V; Glennon, D; ... Schmidt, U; + view all (2021) "I'm truly free from my eating disorder": Emerging adults' experiences of FREED, an early intervention service model and care pathway for eating disorders. Journal of Eating Disorders , 9 (1) , Article 3. 10.1186/s40337-020-00354-9. Green open access

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Abstract

BACKGROUND: Eating disorders (EDs) typically start during adolescence or emerging adulthood, periods of intense biopsychosocial development. FREED (First Episode Rapid Early Intervention for EDs) is a service model and care pathway providing rapid access to developmentally-informed care for emerging adults with EDs. FREED is associated with reduced duration of untreated eating disorder and improved clinical outcomes, but patients' experiences of treatment have yet to be assessed. OBJECTIVE: This study aimed to assess emerging adults' experiences of receiving treatment through FREED. METHOD: This study triangulated qualitative data on participants' experiences of FREED treatment from questionnaires and semi-structured interviews. Participants were 106 emerging adults (aged 16-25; illness duration < 3 yrs) (questionnaire only = 92; interview only = 6; both = 8). Data were analysed thematically. RESULTS: Most participants reported psychological and behavioural changes over the course of treatment (e.g. reduction in symptoms; increased acceptance and understanding of difficulties). Participants identified five beneficial characteristics of FREED treatment: i) rapid access to treatment; ii) knowledgeable and concerned clinicians; iii) focusing on life beyond the eating disorder; iv) building a support network; v) becoming your own therapist. CONCLUSION: This study provides further supports for the implementation of early intervention and developmentally-informed care for EDs. Future service model development should include efforts to increase early help-seeking.

Type: Article
Title: "I'm truly free from my eating disorder": Emerging adults' experiences of FREED, an early intervention service model and care pathway for eating disorders
Location: England
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1186/s40337-020-00354-9
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1186/s40337-020-00354-9
Language: English
Additional information: This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in the credit line; if the material is not included under the Creative Commons license, users will need to obtain permission from the license holder to reproduce the material. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
Keywords: Anorexia nervosa, Binge eating disorder, Bulimia nervosa, Early intervention, Eating disorders
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences > Clinical, Edu and Hlth Psychology
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10119014
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