FAQs

Most Common Questions

What insurance does Renfrew accept?

The Renfrew Center has contracts with most managed care companies for all levels of treatment and is a preferred provider for a great number of insurance companies. We also routinely petition out-of-network carriers to extend benefits to their members. 

Visit our Insurance Coverage & Cost page for more details or call Renfrew’s Program Information Specialists at 1-800-RENFREW (736-3739) for a comprehensive review of your insurance benefits. Our Specialists work with individuals to design a financial plan that meets the needs of each prospective patient.

How do I start the process of getting treatment for myself or someone I love at The Renfrew Center?

A confidential phone conversation with one of our Program Information Specialists is the best and most accurate way to address your questions or concerns and begin the process of receiving treatment: Call 1-800-RENFREW (736-3739). 

If you are calling outside of business hours, you can leave a confidential message and a Program Information Specialist will return your call directly the following business day.

All calls are handled in a confidential manner. If you request a confidential message, a Program Information Specialist will call and identify their first name only, the city/state they are calling from and the number where they can be reached. The Renfrew Center will not be identified on your answering machine or voicemail. Read more about our Intake Process here.

Additionally, you can also contact us through our website or via Live Chat in the bottom righthand corner of your screen (click “Get Help”).

What if I’m not sure it’s really an eating disorder?

It can sometimes be hard to tell when habits have turned into disordered eating. We offer a free consultation with a Program Information Specialist who can help you determine if you could benefit from a clinical assessment. Additionally, take one of our online quizzes to see if your thoughts/behaviors may be of concern:

What types of therapy does Renfrew provide?

The Renfrew Center Unified Treatment Model for Eating Disorders® integrates our relational approach, which fosters growth through healthy relationships, with a treatment model based on the latest scientific research. This allows us to address the complex needs of our patients who avoid experiencing their own emotions and are disconnected from others.

Renfrew’s clinical team understands the emotional issues that are involved in treating an eating disorder and the steps necessary to achieve recovery. Across all levels of care, clinicians are trained in the same treatment principles, and a variety of services are offered to meet patients’ needs.

  • Individual, Group, Family Therapy
  • Creative Arts Therapy
  • Psychiatry
  • Exposure Activities
  • Nutrition Therapy

What does treatment and recovery look like?

Eating disorders are complex illnesses with biological, genetic, psychological, social, and developmental roots. There is never a single cause for someone’s eating disorder and effective treatment must address this entire range of factors. The treatment of eating disorders is equally complex—it involves several different therapeutic disciplines, and usually varying levels of care. Effective treatment and recovery involve an ongoing collaboration among patients, their families/loved ones and outpatient providers. Families, especially for younger individuals with eating disorders, are essential partners in the treatment team. 

Recovery takes place in phases or steps. Renfrew’s continuum of care provides a way to gradually move from a highly structured and intensive residential treatment program to increasingly less structured levels of care. The transitions between levels of care are important moments in the process of recovery but this gradual “step-down” process helps minimize the risk for relapse. 

Re-establishing a pattern of healthy eating, nutrition and physical well-being is the foundation of treatment. Your motivation to recover is a critical element in the recovery process. Healing and motivation are sustained and nurtured through involvement in the community. Renfrew’s treatment approach stresses these essential connections. As you gradually regain your physical and nutritional health, treatment begins to focus on other aspects of successful recovery such as self-esteem and broader aspects of the quality of life.

How much involvement does family have at Renfrew?

Family therapy is a key element of treatment at Renfrew. In addition to individual weekly family sessions facilitated by an experienced and trained clinician, family involvement includes:

  • Multi-Family Groups: Our multi-family groups are attended by current and former patients, as well as their friends, partners and family members. In a group format, discussion focuses on the influence of family communication styles and roles in eating disorder treatment, as well as the application of Unified Treatment skills. This group is a supplemental way for supports to have a space to connect with others in similar positions.
  • Support Person Services: Attendees receive support from clinical staff and each other, while increasing their understanding and learning how to effectively communicate with their loved ones to help them move forward in their recovery.
  • Family Days: Family days are offered for those who have loved ones in residential treatment. Throughout this day-long program, attendees learn about their integral role in the recovery process through educational and interactive workshops led by our clinical staff. Families acquire skills from The Renfrew Center’s Unified Treatment Model for eating disorders to support their loved ones.

Does Renfrew provide patients with any care after they leave the program.

Our commitment to our patients does not stop at discharge. Within the first few days at Renfrew, each individual is assigned an Aftercare Coordinator who meets with them throughout their stay. The Aftercare Coordinator works with patients and their treatment teams to develop next steps following discharge.
Once an individual leaves Renfrew, our goal is to help them stay committed to recovery. By offering an extensive array of aftercare services and resources, including Alumni programs. Renfrew provides a community of support without borders.

What if a patient is still in school?

Renfrew employs education coordinators at each of our Residential campuses who work with the school, parents and treatment team to help balance the priorities of education versus treatment. Most schools will provide special accommodations for patients in our Day Treatment Program (DTP). Once a parent or guardian contacts the school’s guidance counselor and provides them with authorization to speak to the case manager at Renfrew, we will help establish an educational plan to cover the duration of your loved one’s stay in the DTP.

How much freedom do patients have while in residential treatment?

Every day is fairly busy with treatment groups and meetings but there is down time, particularly in the evenings and on weekends. You are permitted to watch TV, engage in arts and crafts, hang out with other patients in the community, or use one of Renfrew’s cordless phones during designated times. There is also the possibility of earning a pass or passes off-campus when you have made a certain degree of progress in the program and are believed to be ready for that challenge.

How can I get my loved one into treatment if they do not want to go?

It is not unusual for individuals suffering from eating disorders to be highly ambivalent or resistant to seeking treatment. If your loved one is being treated by an outpatient team and/or medical specialist, it is important to collaborate with them regarding the best route for treatment and possible need for emergency intervention. Renfrew provides Family Support Services to assist in providing guidance and therapeutic support to family members who are having difficulty with a loved one not wanting to enter treatment. If your loved one is not willing to voluntarily commit to treatment and is deemed a threat to self because they are not eating, then you may want to consider an involuntary hospitalization. You should take your loved one to the closest emergency room for an evaluation and treatment.

Does Renfrew provide patients with any care after they leave the program?

Our commitment to our patients does not stop at discharge. Within the first few days at Renfrew, each individual is assigned an Aftercare Coordinator who meets with them throughout their stay. The Aftercare Coordinator works with patients and their treatment teams to develop next steps following discharge.

Once an individual leaves Renfrew, our goal is to help them stay committed to recovery. By offering an extensive array of aftercare services and resources, including Alumni programs. Renfrew provides a community of support without borders.

About Renfrew

Where is The Renfrew Center located?

Visit our Locations page for a full list. The Renfrew Center has treatment centers across the country, with facilities in California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, North Carolina, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, and Tennessee. No matter where they may live, patients are able to access a full continuum of care either in-person or through our virtual services. Facilities and settings are comfortable, homelike and peaceful in order to reinforce Renfrew’s emphasis on creating a sense of community.

Does The Renfrew Center offer different levels of care?

Yes, The Renfrew Center is unique among treatment centers in offering not just inpatient programs, but a full continuum of care that supports patients well beyond their residential stay. This comprehensive range of services – which is available throughout the country and includes Day Treatment, Intensive Outpatient, Outpatient, and Virtual Services – is tailored with each patient and their outpatient providers to develop treatment plans and goals based on the patient’s unique needs. 

Renfrew maintains continuity in philosophy and approach throughout the individual’s treatment, while facilitating timely transitions from one level of care to another in order to maximize treatment and insurance benefits.

Visit our Services page to read more about levels of care and special programs.

What is The Renfrew Center Unified Treatment Model for Eating Disorders®?

The Renfrew Center Unified Treatment Model for Eating Disorders® addresses both the eating disorder and co-morbid symptoms by explicitly targeting the core, maintaining factors of emotional dysregulation, intolerance and experiential avoidance. Through the use of therapeutic exposure exercises and a set of coordinated group, individual and family modalities, patients gain the skills and confidence to tolerate a range of internal emotional experiences without resorting to the use of eating disorder symptoms. Our ground-breaking study, published in 2018, highlights the effectiveness of our Unified Treatment Model – eating disorder symptoms, experiential avoidance and depression symptoms continued to decrease for at least six months after discharge for patients who received residential care at Renfrew.

What services are provided by The Renfrew Center?

The Renfrew Center is unique among eating disorder treatment centers in offering not only inpatient programs, but a full continuum of care that supports patients well beyond their Residential stays. This comprehensive range of services – available throughout the country – is tailored to each patient, with input from their referring therapist, to develop treatment plans and goals based on the specific needs identified. 

Visit our Services page for a full list.

Does Renfrew treat dual diagnoses?

Yes, The Renfrew Center treats dual diagnoses – meaning address the patient’s eating disorder along with their co-occurring conditions such as substance use, trauma, depression, and anxiety. We offer treatment tracks for trauma and substance use.

Call Renfrew’s Program Information Specialists at 1-800-RENFREW (736-3739) for more information or to set up a free assessment.

 

For Professionals

What levels of care does The Renfrew Center offer?

The Renfrew Center is unique among treatment centers in offering not just inpatient programs, but a full continuum of care that supports patients well beyond their residential stay. This comprehensive range of services – which is available throughout the country and includes Day Treatment, Intensive Outpatient, Outpatient, and Virtual Services – is tailored with each patient and the referring therapist to develop treatment plans and goals based on the patient’s unique needs. 

Renfrew maintains continuity in philosophy and approach throughout the individual’s treatment, all while facilitating timely transitions from one level of care to another in order to maximize treatment and insurance benefits.

Visit our Services page to read more about levels of care and special programs.

Can you explain The Renfrew Center’s treatment philosophy and recovery process?

The Renfrew Center’s treatment philosophy is established on the belief that eating disorders are complex illnesses with biological, genetic, psychological, social, and developmental roots. While there is no single cause for the development of an eating disorder, we believe effective treatment must target the factors that are responsible for maintaining the symptoms once they develop. We conceptualize eating disorders as largely perpetuated by emotional avoidance and relational disconnection. 

Our innovative Unified Treatment Model integrates an emphasis on the healing potential of empathic relational connection with evidence-based, emotion-focused treatment interventions. We help our patients achieve a sustainable recovery through targeted interventions designed to increase emotional tolerance, psychological flexibility and interpersonal effectiveness.

Recovery takes place in phases or steps. Renfrew’s continuum of care provides gradual movement from a highly structured and intensive residential treatment program to increasingly less structured levels of care. These steady transitions are important moments in the process of recovery as this “step-down” progression helps to minimize the risk for relapse.

Does Renfrew treat ARFID patients?

Yes. The Renfrew Center Unified Treatment Model for Eating Disorders® is a transdiagnostic treatment approach that is designed to treat underlying causes of eating disorder symptoms, including those of patients struggling with ARFID. We treat the whole person by:

  • Building emotional awareness through recognition and acceptance of thoughts, physical sensations and behaviors and urges associated with food avoidance behaviors.
  • Creating flexibility in the way one thinks about and responds to food and fears of eating.
  • Incorporating feared, avoided foods slowly and progressively through carefully-planned exposure activities to build emotional tolerance into the experience of eating.
  • Normalizing eating patterns through individualized structured nutrition planning.

ARFID patients at The Renfrew Center work with a multidisciplinary team to address the medical, psychiatric, sensory, nutritional, and behavioral aspects of their disorder. The goals of treatment are to increase one’s flexibility around food and eating and build tolerance to difficult emotions, sensations and situations. As tolerance and flexibility increase, so does one’s ability to live a value-driven life, free of the confines of an eating disorder. Families are provided with the education and skills to better understand and support the patient throughout her recovery and beyond.

When should I refer my patient for treatment?

The Renfrew Center recommends eating disorder treatment in the following circumstances.

Symptoms:

  • Weight changes of concern
  • Rapid or persistent decline in food intake
  • Inability to decrease eating disorder symptoms (purging, restricting, diet pills, laxative, diuretic, or emetic use, excessive or compulsive exercising, binge eating, etc.)
  • Lack of progress with current level of care
  • Co-occurring psychiatric disorder (major depression with or without suicidal features, anxiety, OCD, PTSD, substance abuse, etc.)
  • Decreasing ability to function in daily responsibilities
  • Lack of or a dysfunctional support system
  • Ambivalent or uncooperative with treatment recommendations
  • Physical symptoms such as lightheadedness, chest pain, syncope, palpitations, and GI bleeding

Medical complications such as the following may indicate a need for intensive treatment:

  • Unable to maintain adequate weight 
  • Acute weight decline with food refusal 
  • Dehydration
  • Bradycardia (typically HR < 60 bpm)
  • Greater than a 20 bpm increase in HR with position changes
  • QTc interval > 440
  • BP 90/60 mm HG for adults and 80/50 mm HG for children
  • Orthostatic changes > 20 mm HG for adults or > 10-20 mm HG for children
  • Hepatic, renal, cardiovascular, or organ compromise
  • Glucose < 60 mg/dl
  • Potassium < 3 meq/liter
  • Other electrolyte imbalance
  • Type 1 diabetes (poorly controlled or involved with eating disorder symptom use)
  • Osteopenia or osteoporosis
  • Amenorrhea or oligomenorrhea in females

How do I start the process of getting my patient into treatment at Renfrew?

To start the admission process, professionals should call 1-800-RENFREW. Your call is answered by a Program Information Specialist who needs approximately 10 minutes to gather demographic information, insurance information and some basic eating disorder symptoms. Once this has been completed, and we have spoken directly with the referred patient to confirm they are voluntary for treatment, it generally takes one to two business days to check insurance benefits. As soon as benefits have been verified, we can proceed with scheduling the patient for an assessment. Once a clinical recommendation is determined and the patient has been medically cleared for admission, an admission date can be provided.

Additionally, you can also contact us through our website or via Live Chat in the bottom righthand corner of your screen (click “Get Help”).

How soon can my patient be assessed?

We can schedule your patient for an assessment as soon as we have spoken to them to confirm they are voluntary for treatment, ask some basic symptom questions and verify benefits. An experienced Renfrew clinician will conduct a comprehensive assessment to evaluate your patient’s physical, mental and social health. Then, we will collaborate with you to develop a plan to support your patient’s needs and goals.

How soon can my patient be admitted?

An admission date can be provided once the assessment has been completed, we have received all of the required medical clearances and lab work and our medical practitioner has cleared the patient for admission.

As the referring professional, how will I know when my patient is admitted and subsequently discharged?

The Renfrew Center encourages collaboration with all referring professionals. Before admission, we will explore treatment goals for your patient and, once admitted, we will discuss with you our plan of care and the patient’s progress. We are always interested in your feedback and welcome your input. When the patient is returned to you for ongoing care, you will receive a discharge summary that fully briefs you on their progress, treatment success and our recommendations.

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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