Inspirational story of recovery shared at launch of new eating disorder day service
A woman who suffered with anorexia nervosa for eight years has officially opened a new eating disorder day service for young people in Sussex.
The Spring Tide Eating Disorder Day Service is the first of its kind in Sussex and only one of four in the South East to offer an alternative to inpatient care. This will enable young people to be treated in the community and stay at home with their families.
Spring Tide, run by Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust's Family Eating Disorder Services (SFEDS), is based at Aldrington House in Hove and is for young people aged 18 and under who are already known to specialist Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS).
Katrina Cheshire, 24, who suffered from anorexia nervosa for eight years including six years spent in hospital, cut the ribbon to officially launch the new service on Thursday 3 August 2023. She said:
"If Spring Tide had been around when I was in recovery, I probably wouldn’t have spent so much time in inpatient treatment and probably would have recovered quicker. I truly believed I’d never get better, but I’m living proof that there is a life beyond your eating disorder.
"I feel so honoured, grateful and excited to be opening this new unit, especially as the staff that are here quite literally saved my life and I could never thank them enough for that."
Katrina is now fully recovered and works as in a care home looking after people with dementia.
Shelley Oakeshott, Clinical Service Manager at Spring Tide said:
"Katrina's story is so inspirational and provides hope to so many young people with an eating disorder. We aim to provide families who walk through our doors with help, answers, understanding and compassion when they are in one of the most vulnerable times of their lives.
"Spring Tide will help us treat young people sooner and offer an alternative to staying overnight in hospital to receive the care they need."
Led by a multi-disciplinary team, the service operates Monday to Friday, with young people attending between 10am and 4pm. There is flexibility for families to join for a meal in the evening as part of their care plan.
The 14-week programme is designed around term times including two half terms, with a four-week programme offered over the summer holidays.