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The Renfrew Center of New York City has MOVED!

Treatment Philosophy

The Renfrew Center Unified Treatment Model for Eating Disorders®

All Renfrew locations provide care through The Renfrew Center Unified Treatment Model for Eating Disorders®, which emphasizes the healing potential of empathic relational connection and evidence-based, emotion-focused treatment interventions.

Eating disorders are complex illnesses with biological, genetic, psychological, social, and developmental roots. Since there is no single cause for the development of an eating disorder, treatment is most effective when it targets the factors that are responsible for maintaining the symptoms once they develop.

Thinking About Treatment?

Goals of Treatment

Throughout treatment, patients develop the strength and confidence to take back their lives through the development of four competencies:


Understanding how our emotions impact our ability to engage in authentic, mutual relationships.


Learning to courageously approach rather than avoid emotional experiences, including painful and uncomfortable emotions.


Increasing emotional tolerance and psychological flexibility to decrease the need for unhelpful coping behaviors.


Building emotional skills like self-empathy, self-efficacy and meaningful relationships.

Renfrew’s Treatment Model

We conceptualize eating disorders as largely perpetuated by emotional intolerance and avoidance as well as by relational disconnection from others. Therefore, The Renfrew Center Unified Treatment Model for Eating Disorders® is based on the following tenets:

Relationships & Community

At Renfrew, we hold a fundamental belief that relationships and a sense of community are central to the psychological health of individuals–and that it is essential for patients and their families/supports to be involved in goal setting and the ongoing assessment of treatment progress.

Wholistic & Evidence-based

A transdiagnostic approach to treating the whole person with interventions that address eating disorders and co-morbid symptoms is critical to long-term recovery. We use evidence-based practices and systematically integrate the results of the most current research findings throughout our treatment programs.

Building Resilience

We focus on building resilience in two key ways. First, by explicitly targeting underlying emotional factors that drive symptoms and by building emotional and relational resilience, our patients are able to achieve sustainable recovery. Second, soliciting feedback from patients, families and professionals to continually improve our services, our treatment program is responsive to the needs of our diverse patient population.

Unified Treatment

Our unique and innovative treatment approach has earned national and international recognition, and integrates a transdiagnostic, evidence-based, cognitive-behavioral approach while remaining grounded in relational-cultural principles. Staff are continuously trained in best practices, and our Unified Treatment Model is adaptable and efficacious for neurodivergent patients.

Renfrew operates with the belief that the capacity for healing is stimulated and reinforced by interpersonal connection and, unlike many general or psychiatric hospitals, encourages those struggling with similar problems to join a community of their peers.

The Renfrew Center Unified Treatment Model for Eating Disorders® integrates:

  • Relational-Cultural Therapy
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
  • Dialectical Behavioral Therapy
  • Exposure Therapy
  • Family Therapy
  • Mindfulness
  • Spirituality
  • Dance/Movement Therapy
  • Art Therapy

Reach Out to Us

Call 1-800-RENFREW (736-3739)

Talk with a Program Information Specialist at the number above to learn more about our
services and to schedule an assessment. Or, fill out the information below and we will contact you.

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