ANZAED eating disorder treatment principles and general clinical practice and training standards

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Heruc, G
Hurst, K
Casey, A
Fleming, K
Freeman, J
Fursland, A
Hart, S
Jeffrey, S
Knight, R
Roberton, M
Roberts, M
Shelton, B
Stiles, G
Sutherland, F
et al.
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Introduction: Eating disorders are complex to manage, and there is limited guidance around the depth and breadth of knowledge, skills and experience required by treatment providers. The Australia & New Zealand Academy for Eating Disorders (ANZAED) convened an expert group of eating disorder researchers and clinicians to define the clinical practice and training standards recommended for mental health professionals and dietitians providing treatment for individuals with an eating disorder. General principles and clinical practice standards were first developed, after which separate mental health professional and dietitian standards were drafted and collated by the appropriate members of the expert group. The subsequent review process included four stages of consultation and document revision: (1) expert reviewers; (2) a face-to-face consultation workshop attended by approximately 100 health professionals working within the sector; (3) an extensive open access online consultation process; and (4) consultation with key professional and consumer/carer stakeholder organisations. Recommendations: The resulting paper outlines and describes the following eight eating disorder treatment principles: (1) early intervention is essential; (2) co-ordination of services is fundamental to all service models; (3) services must be evidence-based; (4) involvement of significant others in service provision is highly desirable; (5) a personalised treatment approach is required for all patients; (6) education and/or psychoeducation is included in all interventions; (7) multidisciplinary care is required and (8) a skilled workforce is necessary. Seven general clinical practice standards are also discussed, including: (1) diagnosis and assessment; (2) the multidisciplinary care team; (3) a positive therapeutic alliance; (4) knowledge of evidence-based treatment; (5) knowledge of levels of care; (6) relapse prevention; and (7) professional responsibility. Conclusions: These principles and standards provide guidance to professional training programs and service providers on the development of knowledge required as a foundation on which to build competent practice in the eating disorder field. Implementing these standards aims to bring treatment closer to best practice, and consequently improve treatment outcomes, reduce financial cost to patients and services and improve patient quality of life.

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Journal of Eating Disorders

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© The Author(s). 2020 Open Access This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article's Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article's Creative Commons licence and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this licence, visit The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated in a credit line to the data.

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Nutrition and dietetics


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Heruc, G; Hurst, K; Casey, A; Fleming, K; Freeman, J; Fursland, A; Hart, S; Jeffrey, S; Knight, R; Roberton, M; Roberts, M; Shelton, B; Stiles, G; Sutherland, F; et al., ANZAED eating disorder treatment principles and general clinical practice and training standards, Journal of Eating Disorders, 2020, 8 (1), pp. 63