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Deputy PM pledges to help children who have eating disorders

Recently released data indicates that the number of children suffering from an eating disorder has risen in England.

According to experts, the current levels of services provided to those who have an eating disorder are not always satisfactory.

Nick Clegg, the Deputy Prime Minister, has pledged a further £150m to help such children. The money will be invested in the prevention of eating disorders, reducing the requirement for treatment in hospital.

According to the Health Select Committee, frozen budgets and cuts, combined with an increased demand for such facilities, has caused problems for adolescent and child mental health services. Recent headlines have focused on children who have received treatment on an adult ward, being held in police cells, or having to receive treatment hundreds of miles from home.

Clegg would like to see more community-based care, moving away from institutional responses. About £200m is spent every year on treating eating disorders, while the average cost of an inpatient is £98,750.

The number of children admitted to hospital in 2012-13 was found to have increased by 8%. Of those youngsters who had been taken to hospital with an eating disorder, 20% were discharged on the same day. Those who had to stay longer than six months in hospital accounted for one child in seventeen.

Many schools are trying to create a healthy focus on food and eating by initiating franchise opportunities for mums, who will offer nutritious alternatives to sugary, fatty snacks.

Posted by Mark
January 5, 2015

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