The right care at the right time for Canberrans with eating disorders


A new Territory-wide Model of Care for Eating Disorders will help ensure the best possible care for Canberrans receiving treatment in the ACT public health system.

The new model of care brings together the range of eating disorder services available across the public health system, including the clinical hub, inpatient care and the upcoming residential treatment centre.

The ACT Government has recently received development approval for its new residential treatment centre for eating disorders to be built in Coombs. Construction commenced earlier this month, with the centre to be open in mid-2024.

Minister for Mental Health Emma Davidson said the Territory-wide Model of Care for Eating Disorders provides an evidence-based framework for the right care, at the right time, by the right person or team and in the right location.

“Eating disorders are serious illnesses that can cause high levels of distress and harm for people who experience them,” Minister Davidson said.

“A person with eating disorders has increased risks of developing long-term mental and physical illnesses, an increased risk of premature death due to medical complications and an increased risk of suicide.

“The ACT Government is committed to ensuring Canberrans with eating disorders can get the best possible care in the public health system with the right care, at the right time, in the right place.”

The Territory-wide model of care has been developed by ACT Health in consultation with other ACT government directorates, non-government organisations, community members and clinicians across the ACT.

It outlines the aims, principles and elements of care and provides the basis for how we deliver evidence-based care to every patient, every day through integrated clinical practice, education, and research.

“Models of care are dynamic and can be changed over time to support new evidence and achieve the best possible outcomes,” Minister Davidson said.

“The Territory-wide Model of Care for eating disorders outlines the need for public ACT eating disorder services to be developmentally appropriate and flexible across the continuum of care, from early engagement to ongoing treatment and with the ability to address fluctuations in risk and condition.”

Quote attributable to David Quilty, ACT based director Eating Disorder Families Australia:

“The Territory-wide Model of Care is an important step forward in delivering a continuum of public eating disorder services in the ACT.  The stepped base approach, clinical hub and early intervention service are key recent enhancements and Eating Disorders Families Australia looks forward to the completion of the residential treatment centre and ongoing investment in all the components of the Model of Care.