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Keywords:

  • eating disorders;
  • treatment;
  • patient satisfaction

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to replicate a British survey on patient satisfaction with treatment for eating disorders, factors associated with satisfaction and the consumer's suggestions on how to improve the quality of health care services. A questionnaire was completed by 321 members of the Norwegian organizations for eating disorder patients. The British results were replicated as subjects were highly satisfied with outpatient individual and group psychotherapy, and to a less extent with family therapy. Also, a similar delay of 5–6 years from the first subject recognition of eating disorder symptoms to the time of seeking help was found. However, we found a relation between treatment delay and treatment satisfaction. Inpatient treatment was more favourably experienced in the UK than in Norway. Subjects who experienced therapists as competent on eating disorders reported higher treatment satisfaction. The results imply a critical view on the issue of early detection, a more selective use of family therapy, the need for more competence on eating disorders among clinicians, and a closer cooperation between professionals and the services provided by the patient organizations. Copyright © 2000 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and Eating Disorders Association.