For those of you who don’t have access to decent eating-disorders treatment locally, here is a list of certified FBT therapists (Family-Based Treatment) who are open to treating families using video conference (telemedicine, Skype, Zoom, whatever).
What is a certified FBT therapist?
To me, they are the creme de la creme. They have been through plenty of training and loads of supervision, all from the James Lock – Daniel Le Grange team. So there’s not the problem of chinese whispers, where messages get diluted or important bits are missed out. The process of certification is expensive, so you know these therapists are committed to specialising in treating eating disorders and have plenty of experience.
Many therapists who treat eating disorders mention ‘family treatment’ or ‘Maudsley’ but if they’re not certified, you can’t be sure what you’ll get. Some are excellent, like those who learned at the master’s chair before certification existed, or those who are shadowing a colleague who is going through certification. This site, and my book, will make it clear to you what are good and bad signs when when you first consult a therapist.
If you don’t yet know what FBT is, check out this page. If you like my book and videos, FBT will probably suit you well – I have heard from many FBT therapists who are enthusiastic about my resources and recommend them to their clients.
FBT started out as a treatment for children and teens, but there are developments in using it with young adults.
How does a therapist work by Skype?
You should ask the therapist directly yourself. Here’s what might happen though. A therapist will most probably want you to have a medical/psychiatric team locally, whom they can communicate with. That way the physical side of things is taken care of. Next, the most common form of FBT is done with the whole family in the consulting room (“conjoint”). With internet video, the therapist may choose a variant of the approach (which has some evidence to back it up), where some of the therapist’s time is spent with just the parents (“separated”).
Does FBT via telemedicine work? We just have to rely on common sense and word of mouth for now. Some science will follow, as Kristen Anderson is conducting a study on that very question.
Do you want treatment for your child, or do you want parent support?
Be clear about what you’re looking for. FBT therapists deliver treatment. That includes supporting you, the parent, to do your part. If you ‘just’ want support for yourself, you’d have to check with the therapists below if they’d do that for you. I myself support/coach parents by Skype, to help you treat your child (as long as you have access to some kind of family-friendly approach) and be well yourself.
How much do the therapists charge?
Another question to ask yourself. If it’s any help, the standard FBT approach takes 20 one-hour sessions.
FBT by Skype is rather new, and I’m excited that it will allow so many more families to get quality treatment. At the same time, all over the world there are parents who cannot afford private care. Be aware that many families make the best use they can of their local treatment team, as Harriet Brown explains here.
How can I find out more about a particular therapist?
Check out the webpage that lists all the certified FBT therapists (train2treat4ed.com/certified-therapists-list) , as it shows people’s contact details and websites.
Certified FBT therapists who are happy to work by video conferencing
In no particular order
Joy Jacobs firstname.lastname@example.org (US) She also offers an online course for parents.
Speaks Spanish too – Habla español también
Vicki O’Dwyer email@example.com (Victoria, Australia)
Maria Ganci firstname.lastname@example.org (Australia)
Roslyn Hopf email@example.com (Germany)
Kellie Lavender firstname.lastname@example.org (New Zealand)
Kristen Anderson email@example.com (Chicago, Illinois, US) In the US she can only do video calls within Illinois, but other countries are fine.
Certified FBT therapists who can only treat by video in their own state
In some US states, therapists are not allowed to practice outside the state. See if you are lucky enough to be in their state:
Leslie Bloch firstname.lastname@example.org (New York state, US)
Angela Celio Doyle email@example.com (Washington State, US)
Alexia Spanos firstname.lastname@example.org (Washington State, US)
Maria-Christina Stewart email@example.com (California and Washington DC, US)
Vandana Aspen firstname.lastname@example.org (California, US)
Roxanne Rockwell email@example.com (California, US)
Kristen Anderson firstname.lastname@example.org (Chicago, Illinois, US)
Therapists undergoing certification
These therapists can be really good too. If you get one of them, you’re getting two for the price of one, because they’re getting supervision from the top people. I intend to email them to find out if any of them Skype, and I’ll add that information here.
Therapists who have had some FBT training
Check these lists out, and be aware that some people will have had only 2 days’ training and it could have been a long time ago. Do any of them Skype? I don’t know.
FBT for the next age group
I am excited about FBT adapted for 17 to 25 year olds (“Transition Age Youth” FBT-TAY) and hope to see more of it. Two certified FBT therapists involved in trials are Gina Dimitropoulos and Kristen Anderson. You’ll see above that Kristen can consult with families by Skype. Gina probably can not, but one thing she can do is provide supervision to clinicians who want training in FBT with adolescents and young adults.