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Sovereign Health Discusses Its Comprehensive Eating Disorder Program in New Television Interview

San Clemente, Calif. — Sept. 30, 2016 — Sovereign Health, a leading national provider of behavioral health treatment services, announces a new television interview about its Eating Disorder Program. The interview, featuring Janet Whitney, M.A., LMFT, Eating Disorder Program Director at Sovereign Health of San Clemente, was first broadcast live on the NBC affiliate KMIR’s program “Desert Living” on Wednesday, Sept. 28. In the interview, Whitney discusses Sovereign Health’s two Eating Disorder Programs. Sovereign currently has an adult program for women at its San Clemente facility and an adolescent program at its Rancho San Diego facility. Both programs specialize in the treatment of anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa, providing both inpatient and outpatient services. In addition, the programs offer patients individualized treatment plans, encompassing cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and dialectical behavior therapy (DBT). Patients also participate in individual and group sessions, nutrition and body-image therapy, and experiential treatments, such as art and equine therapy.

“I’ve been a therapist for 35 years, and eight years ago, my daughter developed an eating disorder. I dove into the issue and how to treat it because of my daughter. Now, helping a patient with an eating disorder is close to my heart,” says Whitney. “Our approach to treatment is multifaceted. I’m proud to be a part of an organization that treats not only the symptoms, but also the underlying issues.”

As Whitney notes in the interview, eating disorders have the highest mortality rate of any mental illness. “People are not recognizing the deadliness of this disease,” says Whitney. “When someone has a problem with food, their likelihood of dying is so much greater than heroin, alcohol or anything else.”

When asked what makes this program unique and successful, Whitney replied, “In my experience, I’ve learned that punishment, shame and other negative influences on people who have an eating disorder does not work. Sovereign Health has changed the method to the nurture heart. The nurture heart talks to the person and says ‘you have a good heart.’ Let’s aim for a person’s positivity. This helps the person grow and the food becomes a secondary step to them. And that’s what we provide to patients, a healing environment.”

Bryan Gallo, the host of the “Desert Living” program, asked if it’s difficult to recruit patients with an eating disorder. “That is the most difficult part, Bryan. Someone with an eating disorder feels that food is their enemy. They’re afraid that if they join a treatment facility, they’ll be forced to eat. They’re afraid of eating! We really need to speak with these people and let them know that this program is going to change their life. Also, the program is not going to make them fat, but help them live a healthier life.”

Whitney also adds, “In 1921, Miss America’s average body mass index (BMI), which is your weight compared to your height, was at 23. And now, in the past 20 years, Miss America’s average BMI is at 16, which is diagnosed as anorexia. Eighty percent of 10-year-olds are afraid they’re going to be fat. Sovereign Health started this program a year ago when we noticed how fast the issue is growing. We’re going to go across the country with the Eating Disorder Program in all nine locations in the five states we’re located in.”

Sovereign Health operates nine treatment facilities in five states: California, Arizona, Florida, Texas and Utah. The facilities are fully licensed and have been awarded Gold Seal accreditation by The Joint Commission, the highest level of accreditation available in the behavioral health field. Desert Living is a 30-minute TV program broadcast from Palm Springs in the desert’s Coachella Valley.

About Sovereign Health

Sovereign Health’s mission is to provide a broad spectrum of high-quality behavioral health treatment services for adults and adolescents, including support services for family members. One factor that differentiates Sovereign from other treatment providers has been the company’s ability to offer separate mental health and addiction or dual diagnosis treatment programs at its facilities. For more information, visit www.sovhealth.com.


Media Contact:

Wendy Allen, Public Relations Manager: 866-686-0090

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