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New Canaan's Silver Hill Hospital Adds Program To Treat Eating Disorders

Dr. Sigurd Ackerman of Silver Hill Hospital in New Canaan. Photo Credit: Silver Hill Hospital
Silver Hill Hospital Announces Eating Disorders Program with Inpatient and Residential Treatment Options Photo Credit: Contributed

NEW CANAAN, Conn. -- Silver Hill Hospital in New Canaan has opened an eating disorder program offering both inpatient and residential treatment.

The center treats people ages 18 years and older, both men and women, with such eating disorders as anorexia, bulimia or binge eating, among others.

The program provides a full year of integrated treatment instead of the usual fragmented approach that causes patients to change facilities whenever the disease changes course, Silver Hill said in a statement.

The new program, which opened in November, has three levels of care: inpatient, residential, and an innovative Recovery Support Follow-up Service that works with the patient’s community support network for 12 months after leaving Silver Hill, which is when relapse is most common.

Silver Hill is a psychiatric hospital and can treat all the emotional, behavioral and physical aspects of the mental illness with the highest mortality rate.

Those suffering from disordered eating often present with coexisting psychiatric issues such as depression, anxiety, substance abuse or suicidal ideation, compounded by malnutrition, and heart or other vital organ malfunction, the statement said.

“Fifty percent of patients with eating disorders have another mental illness, or a dual disorder. The nature of the disease also means that many fight physical medical conditions as well, ” says Dr. Sigurd Ackerman, president and medical director of Silver Hill. “Treating these together is essential if a patient is to have a positive outcome. As a psychiatric hospital, we can prescribe all appropriate pharmacological interventions. There is a psychiatrist on our campus 24/7, and we have a multidisciplinary team of specially trained psychologists, social workers, dietitians and nurses to work with each patient.”

Erin I. Kleifield, who has more than 30 years of experience in treating eating disorders, will lead the program. She received her doctorate from Stamford, is former staff psychologist on the inpatient eating disorder unit at Cornell University Medical College.

“Disordered eating is an incredibly complex illness that requires many types of support,” says Kleifield.

“A patient might need to move back and forth between the inpatient and residential programs. That Silver Hill has both makes the difficult healing process easier for the patient and their family,” she says. “Thirty million people suffer from eating disorders in the U.S., yet only 35 percent seek care at facilities that specialize in treating them.”

For more information visit Silver Hill Hospital .

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