Tuesday 2 May 2017

"Dietitian axed from our CAMHS team" - a post from 3rd June 2010 on the ATDT parents' forum.

So, back in spring 2010, there we were with this triangulation going on - the dietitian appearing to say one thing and the rest of the CAMHS team saying another. Then on 3rd June I got a shock. Our CAMHS dietitian announced she'd been axed from the service. I burst out into tears in front of her! And when I got home I posted on the Around The Dinner Table Forum (before writing letters of complaint to the NHS Commissioners who were unsympathetic).

I can't believe it, I just CAN'T BELIEVE IT, but our adolescent mental health services have, in their wisdom, axed the dietitian from CAMHS teams treating outpatients. Only inpatients will receive nutritional advice from a qualified dietitian. Considering that eating disorders are about... FOOD!!!!!... and distorted ideas about food plus it's all about putting on weight and learning to eat healthily and with a normal, undistorted attitude towards food, dietitian aren't just essential, they're VITAL. But I don't need to tell you guys this...

It's been suggested I write a letter for our psychiatrist to hand to the axeman/woman. The psychiatrist has complained, too. We have just one more appointment with the nutritionist before the axe falls.

Considering the INCREASE in eating disorders over the past decade and the high mortality rate for eating disorders, this kind of cutting is a disgrace and is putting children's lives at risk. It's not only a DISGRACE, it's CRIMINAL.

PS And this on an evening when my son is refusing to eat his tea, any of it, because the onion I'm making into a veg tomato pasta sauce is 'swimming in oil' (1 tablespoon) and yesterday he cut off all the fat off a slice of bacon, leaving just a small bit of meat. This is the boy that our local NHS has decided doesn't need an eating disorders dietitian any longer.

Me, I'm afraid I'm back to plate smashing because I have a boy who refuses to eat his evening meal, I have nothing else to give him and instinct says I shouldn't give in to the eating disorder anyway. And the rug has been pulled from under our feet with the dietitian axe.

Oh, yeh, and my husband blamed me for yesterday's meltdown where I ended up an emotional wreck. Today = same wreck, so I can expect same unhelpful comments no doubt about why I should be more 'upbeat' and 'chirpy' about all this.

Back in my past life when I was normal, I used to write letters to the paper, get on the radio, etc about things that bugged me (and how trivial they all seem now!!!!!)

Obviously this is what I am going to have to do again.

Hey ho...

I have fired off a revised letter to 'the powers that be' today, as a formal complaint. Considering that the dietitian only spends one day a week with adolescent eating disorder patients and the majority of those are in-patients (which is continuing), I tend to feel that the remainder of the time she spends with outpatients is pence, really, in terms of fund savings. Axing this service seems crazy. But it seems it was only ever going to be a 12 months contract, ending now, unless 'the powers that be' decided it was sufficiently important to make it into a permanent post - which they obvious didn't. But we were NEVER TOLD this was the case so it came as a bombshell.

PS Just googling private dietitian in our area (UK) and can't find a blooming thing... anywhere! Anyone know how I go about finding one specialising in eating disorders? I thought it would be simple...

More feedback from the psychiatrist on the axing. She says this particular CAMHS is the only one in the city with dietetic support anyway, the other teams don't have any at all.

The psychiatrist also feels that we've almost reached the end of our need for a dietitian anyway (!). So I said I'd have no choice but to go private as I definitely feel we need dietetic input for some time to come!! She was very sympathetic and I know her hands are tied.

I've finally heard from (the Head of our city's) CAMHS about whether or not they will be reinstating our dietitian and the answer is that the "Commissioners say no"...

I spent 30 minutes on the phone to her going bonkers - or rather stating my case in black and white with flashing Las Vegas lights.

So it's time to get out my chequebook, dip into my savings and pay for a private dietitian...

I am hopping mad. I feel like committing murder - or worse! I wouldn't wish an ED on my own worst enemy, not even the Commissioners themselves and their children (who, obviously, have never been through the experience we have been through as parents...)

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