Hollywood launches first comprehensive
binge eating disorder program
A new comprehensive binge eating disorder
program, which is the first of its kind in Western
Australia, is being introduced at Hollywood Private
Hospital following a successful pilot program.
The nine week intensive program provides a supported
therapeutic environment for people suffering from binge eating
disorder, which affects about 430,000 Australians making it the
most common eating disorder in the country.
A leading eating disorder expert based at Hollywood Private
Hospital, Dr Vash Singh, said binge eating disorder was
characterised by repeated episodes of consuming large
amounts of food causing the person to feel out of control
and experience a strong sense of shame and guilt.
“Binge eating disorder is often accompanied by eating rapidly
and until uncomfortably full, eating in the absence of physical
hunger and alone or in secret,” Dr Singh said.
Dr Singh said the disorder, which unlike anorexia and bulimia
affected a more equal balance of men and women, often
caused weight gain and was very difficult to diagnose – partly
because of the stigma and partly due to lack of awareness.
“People often don’t speak out because of associated feelings
of shame and guilt,” Dr Singh said.
“Doctors need to be mindful of the signs and symptoms of
binge eating disorder and if a patient presents with mood
symptoms or is seeking advice on weight loss, they should
screen for the disorder.”
The three phrased program is comprised of:
• an inpatient stay aimed at breaking the cycle of binge eating
and reintroducing regular eating routines in a therapeutic
• twice weekly evening group therapy sessions for one month
• weekly evening group sessions for one month.
During the inpatient stay, participants are offered one-on-one
sessions with a team of eating disorder professionals,
including the psychiatrist, psychologist and also a dietitian,
who helps develop meal plans tailored to their specific needs
along with daily relaxation exercises to complement the group
“Participants will also be managed for any associated medical
or psychiatric problems, which are common in people with
binge eating disorder,” Dr Singh said.
“The outpatient component of the program, run over eight
weeks, offers cognitive behavioural therapy and dialectical
behaviour therapy to assist in managing difficult thoughts
“This also helps participants to identify the triggers of their
unhelpful eating behaviour, as well as the factors that maintain
“Participants are taught about the role of different nutrients in
the body and how to make food choices that will support long
term recovery,” Dr Singh said.
Dr Singh said the program was also aimed at improving general
wellbeing, such as self-worth, goal setting and body image.
A cardiothoracic surgeon at North Shore Private Hospital has started using a new minimally-invasive
technique to treat cardiac patients.
Minimally-invasive mitral repair or replacement – known
as “mini-mitral” – is a relatively new development in the
approach for mitral valve surgery, and is less invasive when
compared to traditional open heart surgery.
Dr Levi Bassin explained the mitral valve is the “inflow valve”
for the left side of the heart.
“Occasionally the mitral valve is abnormal from birth, but
more often it degenerates with age or as a result of cardiac
disease,” Dr Bassin said.
“Mitral valve disease is diagnosed when the valve is unable
to function properly. Certain patients may be able to have their
valve repaired or replaced without fully opening the chest.”
“Mini-mitral can be performed if there is no need for other
valve or coronary bypass surgery at the same time.”
Dr Bassin said the use of minimally-invasive techniques
removes the need to split the breastbone, which can result in
benefits such as less pain and trauma for the patient, reduced
risk of infection and a faster recovery.
The surgery is performed with specialised cameras and the
valve is repaired via a small incision made in the right chest
to access the heart. Another small incision is made in the right
hip crease to connect the patient to the heart-lung machine.
Brian McDougall was the first patient at North Shore Private
Hospital to undergo minimally-invasive mitral valve repair.
The success of the procedure meant he did not require long-term
blood thinners associated with artificial heart valves.
Before a decision is made to perform minimally-invasive
surgery on a patient, a number of tests are required to ensure
the safety of that person.
Minimally-invasive cardiothoracic surgery
arrives at North Shore Private
6 The Ramsay Way 2018 | 04
to benefit from
The Emergency Department at Peel Health
Campus (PHC) will undergo a $5 million upgrade
to improve patient flow, enhance privacy and create
a more comfortable environment for patients.
WA Health Minister, the Hon. Roger Cook MLA, said the
improvements would ensure the provision of high-quality
care in a pleasant, healing and clinically appropriate
The upgrade will include:
• reconfiguration of the existing triage area to facilitate early
senior medical review and comfort;
• an expanded and modernised waiting room to
• a new fast-track ambulatory area to improve patient privacy;
• new holding bays to enhance privacy;
• eight additional short stay admission beds, which will help
improve patient flow.
PHC Chief Executive Officer, Dr Margaret Sturdy, said the
Emergency Department works would help the hospital
respond to the needs of the growing and diverse local
“We are delighted the Government has pledged this
additional $5 million to help improve comfort and
Patient Brian McDougall with Dr Levi Bassin,
Dr Vash Singh
Peel Health Campus Director of Emergency Medicine
Dr Andrew Walker, CEO Dr Margaret Sturdy, WA Health Minister
Roger Cook and patient Doreen Ella