Eating Recovery Center Bethesda
Located in Bethesda, Maryland, ERC Bethesda serves medically stable children, adolescents and adults with eating disorders.
Our eating disorders program provides evidence-based treatment for all types of eating disorders, including ARFID and Binge Eating Disorder. Our PHP program enables patients to eat three meals every day with their treatment team and offers ample opportunities to practice new skills in a safe, healing environment. Additionally, we work with our Baltimore-based ERC centers to provide a comprehensive continuum of care that helps patients easily transition based on needs.
We also offer a three-day-a-week Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP) led by a multidisciplinary treatment team of compassionate professionals with an emphasis on cognitive behavior therapy (CBT and CBT-E), family-based therapy (FBT), Emotionally Focused Family Therapy (EFFT), and exposure therapy. Specialized care and treatment for elite athletes, males and individuals with dual diagnosis is available.
With convenient access to nearby communities, attractions, entertainment, business and healthcare – and less than a 30-minute drive from Washington, D.C. – our center supports a social and therapeutic environment to help light the way for patients to find lasting wellness.
Highly Effective Eating Disorder Treatment in Bethesda, MD
Located in Bethesda, Maryland, less than 25 minutes from Washington, D.C., ERC Bethesda offers medically stable adults, adolescents and children with eating disorders:
- A seven-day-a-week partial hospitalization program (PHP)
- A three-day-a-week intensive outpatient program (IOP)
ERC Bethesda is in the heart of the community, within walking distance from Bethesda Row: a bustling, pedestrian-friendly downtown district full of shops, restaurants and entertainment with easy access to Washington, D.C. via the Metro System. With natural greenery and a walking trail directly behind the center, ERC Bethesda is a supportive, social and therapeutic community matched by convenience to nearby urban epicenters and world-renowned medical systems.
- Trusted by over 20,000 patients and their families
- 87% of former patients agreed that their experience at ERC was helpful
- 91% of parents of former patients would recommend ERC to others in need of services
- Specialized treatment designed by a team of experienced clinicians
Find Recovery with Evidence-Based Therapies
- Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)
- Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP)
- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
- Emotion-Focused Family Therapy (EFFT)
- Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT)
- Family-Based Treatment-informed care (FBT – for children and adolescents)
- Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT)
Lighting Your Way to Recover from Eating Disorders
Come as you are: your authentic self
Learn how to interrupt eating disorder thoughts and behaviors to create a life based on your values.
Get the right support at the right time
Embrace a compassionate care team who knows your story and is there every step of the way.
Stay connected with your recovery community
Healing doesn’t end when you leave our program; it’s just the beginning. Stay connected through extensive supportive resources.
Benefit From Expert Eating Disorder Care
Accredited by the Joint Commission, our center's medical and clinical leadership team includes the world’s leading eating disorders treatment experts, many of whom have actively led research supporting effective, evidence-based eating disorders treatment. Located in the middle of a vibrant healthcare ecosystem, ERC Bethesda often coordinates care with other hospitals and health systems nearby including Johns Hopkins, Inova, MedStar, George Washington University and more.
“We provide the leading empirically supported treatments for all eating disorders while attending to the individual needs of our patients, families, and supports. Our clinicians receive intensive training and are led by a team of experts with decades of experience in the field.”
Who We Treat
Children & Adolescents
We can help guide you and your child on a path to long-lasting change and healing.
We provide eating disorder treatment and mood and anxiety disorder treatment for all genders ages 18 and older.
Conditions We Treat
An eating disorder is a treatable mental illness that includes a number of different symptoms, including extreme emotions, attitudes, and behaviors surrounding weight and food issues.
Anorexia nervosa is characterized by an obsessive fear of weight gain and a refusal to maintain a healthy body weight.
You can’t tell if someone has an eating disorder just by looking at them. See how atypical anorexia affects people in a variety of body shapes and sizes.
ARFID is a lesser known eating disorder that frequently begins as early as infancy or childhood, but adults can also suffer.
Binge Eating Disorder
Binge eating disorder is characterized by frequent overeating – at least once a week for three months – combined with a lack of control, intense feelings of distress and several other characteristic behaviors.
Bulimia is characterized by patterns of bingeing and purging.
Compulsive overeating can involve binge eating and weight gain, but it can also involve other behaviors.
The term diabulimia is used to describe the diagnosis of an eating disorder in an individual with type 1 diabetes. These patients intentionally misuse insulin for weight control.
Some eating disorders do not meet all of the diagnostic criteria for specific diagnoses like anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa.
Some people go to extremes to “eat clean” at all times. This may lead to a disordered eating pattern known as orthorexia.
Levels of Care Offered
Our Inpatient programming is designed to support adults, children and adolescents of all genders who are acutely ill and are experiencing medical and mood instability as a result of their eating disorder.
Within ERC Pathlight's step-down model of care, the Residential eating disorder treatment program as well as the Residential mood & anxiety treatment program offer medically stable patients a highly-structured and supportive 24-hour treatment environment.
Our Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP) offers some of the same intensity and structure of Residential mood, anxiety, and eating disorder treatment while providing additional opportunities to practice recovery outside of the controlled eating disorder treatment environment during evenings at home or in peer-supported apartment communities.
On-Site Intensive Outpatient Treatment
Our Intensive Outpatient program is a flexible mood, anxiety, and eating disorder treatment program that allows patients to work, go to school, or care for children during the day and sleep at home at night.
Virtual Intensive Outpatient - Eating Recovery At Home
ERC is removing the barriers that can keep patients with anorexia, bulimia, and other eating disorders from receiving treatment. Through telebehavioral health programming, Eating Recovery At Home (our virtual Intensive Outpatient Program) offers the same proven care as our in-person treatment centers.
Get the right support at the right time
Our highly experienced physicians, registered dietitians and licensed therapists bring vast expertise to ERC Bethesda. Combined decades of experience at leading behavioral health treatment centers are integrated into the ERC curriculum, and all therapists are trained in a nationally validated, trauma-informed psychotherapy model to deliver the most up-to-date, evidence-based therapies. Having our clinical team on-site provides seamless coordination of care. While in treatment, you’ll work with:
- Psychiatrists and internal medicine physicians
- Therapists and family clinicians
- Registered dietitians
- Nursing support
- Alumni support and other support staff
Find long-lasting recovery with our 7-day PHP
Research indicates that unstructured weekends without meal planning and accountability create unnecessary setbacks during treatment. Because eating disorders don’t take weekends off, neither do we. At ERC Bethesda, our 7-day PHP provides the maximum clinical standard of care for the best chance at lasting recovery. Our program enables patients to eat three meals each day with their treatment team and offers ample opportunities to practice new skills in a safe, healing environment.
Additionally, we work closely with our Baltimore-based ERC centers to provide a comprehensive continuum of care that helps patients easily transition to various levels of care based on our patients’ needs. We also engage in frequent communication and coordination with local outpatient community providers to ensure continuity of care and positive outcomes.
Nutritional Counseling & Education
Through education, support and structure, we offer patients a comprehensive, personalized nutrition plan: nutritional rehabilitation that safely helps each individual achieve optimal physical and mental health. Individualized eating disorder treatment plans at ERC Bethesda include:
- Evidence-based interventions
- Medical support
- Family involvement
- Discharge planning and alumni support
Individualized nutrition plans are developed from a thorough pre-admission assessment, which acknowledges each patient's unique history, personality, strengths and recovery challenges. At ERC Bethesda, patients participate in:
- Cooking classes
- Food exposures
- Grocery store tours and more
- “Innings” (bringing food into the facility)
- “Outings” (attending one of many nearby restaurants)
This treatment approach helps patients and families experience the freedom of healing and recovery. For those interested in specific programming for binge eating disorder (BED), we have virtual groups for adults in the state of Maryland.
Traveling for care? We can help
Through our travel concierge services, out-of-town patients and their families can receive support with travel arrangements and housing during their stay. ERC Bethesda offers apartments for families to stay while loved ones are in treatment, or out-of-town PHP patients to stay close to the treatment center. The area also includes a variety of other hotels, and our Travel Concierge works closely with all families to ensure they feel supported with housing, travel and any other logistics.
Support for the Entire Family
Providing families guidance and care
Our evidence-based treatment modalities include dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), emotion-focused family therapy (EFFT), family-based treatment (FBT), cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT).
ERC Bethesda’s programming includes yoga, art and music-based therapy groups to support experiential learning and supplement clinical process groups. Patients often go for nature walks along the trail behind the center, surrounded by lush greenery and natural lighting. Therapists can accompany patients to help guide exposures and mindfulness.
New skills to support your loved one
At ERC Bethesda, we understand the critical importance of helping parents, caregivers and families learn how to best support their young loved ones. We offer an array of resources for families and caregivers rooted in EFFT and FBT, including an education series, family therapy sessions and more. Patients and loved ones are also connected with a community outreach liaison for ongoing support after treatment.
Stay up to date with school
ERC Bethesda offers Education Specialists for all students, providing programming 6-8 hours a week. Children and teens work with our staff in a dedicated school resource room to continue their academic progress while in treatment.
Our Education Specialist functions as an academic liaison with schools to ensure academic tracking and a smooth transition back to school. For young adult and adult students, most colleges offer flexibility when seeking mental health care – and we will work with you to ensure your loved one can balance recovery with outside obligations.
Just one phone call to get started
Reaching out for help is a critical first step on the path to healing and recovery. Give us a call and our compassionate admissions team will walk you through the entire process with care, compassion and support. Got a question?
No referral is ever needed for you to access the treatment you need and deserve.
Let us help you with insurance
When facing a life-threatening eating disorder, you should never have to worry about how to pay for treatment or any financial burdens. Your top priority? Finding the best eating disorder treatment center possible. Our experienced team of insurance verification experts does everything we can to simplify, summarize and streamline the payment process for you.
Get matched with the exact support you need.
With one conversation, our mental health professionals will help you better understand what you’re going through and what you need.
We will meet you where you are, listen to your story in a therapeutic setting, and match you with the level of support that meets your struggle.
Covered by Most Commercial Insurance Plans
Our patient access team is here to advocate for you. We can help you address financial challenges and work with you to get you the maximum coverage offered by your plan.
Frequently Asked Questions
Where is ERC Bethesda located?
ERC Bethesda is in the heart of Bethesda: an unincorporated, census-designated place in southern Montgomery County, Maryland. The center is less than 25 minutes northwest from Washington, D.C. and easily accessible by the Metro System.
What type of eating disorder support do you offer once treatment ends?
Extensive aftercare planning conducted by an Aftercare Coordinator helps ensure you have a “plan of action” for continuity of care and maintaining recovery progress. A clinician-led team provides ongoing support for patients who have transitioned to outpatient care through alumni events, free support groups, social recovery communities and resources for patients and caregivers.
What type of eating disorder support is offered for caregivers, family members and friends?
Family members, caregivers and friends are often critical to helping a loved one recover from an eating disorder. Each week, family members take part in family therapy sessions. Visits with family members are easy and convenient since the treatment center is housed in the same building as a hotel. Along with family therapy, family members and caregivers are invited to take part in:
How long does someone typically have to stay in eating disorder treatment?
While our average length of stay is about 6-8 weeks, that can vary based on the level of care, the severity of illness, medical complications, insurance coverage and various other factors.
Expert Care for Eating Disorders in Bethesda, MD
Meet the leadership team at Eating Recovery Center Bethesda.
Kim Effertz Link
Kim EffertzRegional Vice PresidentKim Effertz joined Eating Recovery Center and Pathlight Mood & Anxiety Center in September 2021 as an Operating Vice President ...READ MORE
Steven F. Crawford Link
Steven F. CrawfordRegional Medical DirectorDr. Steven Crawford is the Medical Director at Eating Recovery Center and Assistant Chief of Psychiatry at University of ...READ MORE
Kim Anderson Link
Kim AndersonExecutive DirectorDr. Kim Anderson is the Executive Director at Pathlight Mood & Anxiety Center. She currently oversees clinical programming at ...READ MORE
Ellen Astrachan-Fletcher Link
Ellen Astrachan-FletcherRegional Clinical DirectorEllen Astrachan-Fletcher, PhD, FAED, CEDS-S, is Regional Clinical Director, Eating Recovery Center and Pathlight Mood and ...READ MORE
Caitlin Royster Link
Caitlin RoysterNutrition DirectorCAITLIN ROYSTER is the Nutrition Director at Eating Recovery Center Hunt Valley and Bethesda locations. She earned her BS in ...READ MORE
Lara Kenik Link
Lara KenikRegional Nursing DirectorLara Kenik joined Eating Recovery Center/Pathlight Mood & Anxiety Center (ERCPL) in August 2016 as a full-time overnight nurse ...READ MORE
Zach Marselle Link
Zach MarselleDirector of Operational ExcellenceZach joined ERC and Pathlight in 2020, bringing a combined 15 years of experience between healthcare administration and public ...READ MORE
Kelsey Estry Link
Kelsey EstryRegional Nutrition DirectorKelsey Estry, MS, RD, LDN, is a graduate of Michigan State University. She completed her Dietetic Internship at Loyola ...READ MORE
Heather VanHooser Link
Heather VanHooserChief Nursing OfficerHeather joined ERC Pathlight as Chief Nursing Officer in 2023. She holds three bachelor’s degrees, a MBA, and a Master’s in ...READ MORE
Find Virtual Eating Disorder Treatment in Maryland
For additional convenience and flexibility, we also offer virtual eating disorder treatment for individuals in Maryland through our Eating Recovery At Home program. Individuals in all cities and towns across Maryland, including the cities and counties listed below, are eligible to participate in Eating Recovery At Home.
- Falls Church
- Great Falls
- Washington, D.C.
- Potomac Falls
- Ellicott City
- Montgomery County
- Howard County
- Harford County
- Anne Arundel County
Explore Our Other Locations in Maryland
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