The State Government needs to step up its consultation processes on an Illawarra eating disorders plan after it was revealed only 50 people attended an Eating Disorders Project Forum on 15 October 2014 convened by the Illawarra Shoalhaven Local Health District, Member for Shellharbour, Anna Watson, said today.
“There are up to 5000 young people in the Illawarra region aged between 10 and 24 years old living with an eating disorder.
“It’s positive that 50 people attended the Forum on 15 October, but there needs to be more of an effort by the State Government and Illawarra Shoalhaven Local Health District to ensure far more people in the region are aware there is a consultation process under way right now.
“We need to all ensure that the consultation process on the development of an Illawarra eating disorder plan is as wide and as extensive as possible.
“I’m calling on the Minister for Mental Health and the Illawarra Shoalhaven Local Health District to step up awareness in the community of the consultation processes underway so as many families and young people living with eating disorders have direct input into what services are needed in the Illawarra region to help them”, she said.
Ms Watson has been lobbying the State Government to introduce new services for eating disorder patients in the Illawarra region over the last two years, and has raised the issue in the State Parliament.
“People living with eating disorders in the Illawarra – up to 5000 of them, young people – should be able to get access to services where they live.
“I don’t accept that second largest regional area in the State after the Hunter should be left out of treatment services which are clearly expanding in other regional areas.
“To ensure that the development of the Illawarra eating disorders plan is as comprehensive as possible, the State Government and Illawarra Shoalhaven Local Health District must step up to ensure these important consultations are as extensive as possible across the Illawarra region”, Ms Watson said.
28 November 2014