Despite considerable knowledge of outcomes for patients who complete treatment for eating disorders, less is known about earlier stages in the treatment journey. This study aimed to map the efficiency of the anticipated patient journey along care pathways. Referrals to specialist eating disorder services (n=1887) were tracked through the process of referral, assessment, treatment and discharge.
The patient mortality rate was low. However, there were serious problems of attrition throughout the care pathways. of the original referrals where a meaningful conclusion could be reached, in approximately 35% the person was never seen, only half entered treatment and only a quarter reached the end of treatment.
This study demonstrates considerable inefficiency of resource utilisation. Suggestions are made for reducing this inefficiency, to allow more patients the opportunity of evidence-based care.
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