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What is the ANZAED Eating Disorder Credential?

The ANZAED Eating Disorder Credential is formal recognition of qualifications, knowledge, training, and professional development activities needed to meet minimum standards for the delivery of safe and effective eating disorders treatment. The criteria for the Credential are built on the NEDC Workforce Core Competencies and the ANZAED Clinical Practice & Training Standards.

What is a Credentialed Eating Disorder Clinician?

A Credentialed Eating Disorder Clinician is a health professional who has been recognised as meeting the qualifications, knowledge, training and professional development activities needed to meet minimum standards for the provision of safe and effective eating disorder treatment, and has therefore been awarded the ANZAED Eating Disorder Credential.

Which professions are eligible to apply for the Credential?

The Credential is available to mental health professionals (psychologists, social workers, occupational therapists, counsellors, psychotherapists, mental health nurses, nurse practitioners) and dietitians providing treatment for people with eating disorders who meet the outlined criteria. A further inclusion is for general practitioners who are registered providers of Focused Psychological Strategies and psychiatrists who are providing psychological therapy, rather than in their role as a medical practitioner. More information about eligibility and the criteria can be found here.

Why has the Credential been developed?

The Credential is designed to support the treatment of individuals experiencing eating disorders across all diagnostic presentations, from early intervention through to complex and acute presentations, both in public and private settings. The Credential aims to enhance the effectiveness and consistency of treatment for eating disorders in Australia.

The Credential has been developed to:

  • Help people experiencing eating disorders to identify and access the right treatment at the right time, increasing the chance of timely intervention and positive treatment outcome
  • Support referrers to easily locate a mental health professional and/ or dietitian to provide treatment for people experiencing an eating disorder
  • Build the eating disorders workforce and promote workforce development and training
  • Enable clinicians to achieve recognition for their skills and experience

What is ANZAED?

The Australia & New Zealand Academy for Eating Disorders (ANZAED) is the peak body representing and supporting the activities of all professionals working in the field of eating disorders and related issues in prevention, treatment and research.

ANZAED aims to provide opportunities for collegial interaction, sharing of knowledge and resources, networking and advocacy roles to support researchers, clinicians and others working in the area of eating disorders.

What is NEDC?

The National Eating Disorders Collaboration (NEDC) is an initiative of the Australian Government dedicated to developing and implementing a nationally consistent, evidence-based system of care for the prevention and treatment of eating disorders.

NEDC synthesizes research evidence, clinical expertise and lived experience in national standards and workforce initiatives to build an effective, equitable and accessible system of care for all Australians.

Who was involved in the development of the criteria for the Credential?

Funded by the Australian Government Department of Health, ANZAED and NEDC led an in-depth national consultation process during 2019-2020 with over 900 participants to develop the criteria and process for the ANZAED Eating Disorder Credential. Participants included clinicians working in regional, rural, and remote areas, general practitioners, psychiatrists, private practice clinicians, early career clinicians, business owners in the private sector, public sector service leaders, eating disorder sector leaders, key professional bodies, and people with lived experience and families and supports. The full consultation summary can be found here.

What is the role of the Governing Council:

The Governing Council (the Council) is responsible for the strategic guidance of the credentialing application and renewals process, approval of policies and standards, disputes related to credentialing applications and renewals as well as providing ongoing support, understanding and awareness of the eating disorder sector and best practice.

The Council operates with powers delegated by the ANZAED Executive Committee and is responsible to the ANZAED Executive Committee.

The Council consists of five Council members appointed by the ANZAED Executive Committee. This includes the immediate Past President of ANZAED, and four other appointees, including two mental health professionals, one dietitian and one individual with lived experience. Read more about the Council members here.

How can I apply for the Credential?

Applications open on the 24 November 2021 and can be made through the connect·ed website.

How much will the Credential cost?

The Credential is designed to present low administrative burden and reasonable cost for clinicians. Applying for the Credential is free until 30 June 2022. If you apply during this time, you will be charged an annual renewal fee on 1 July 2022 of $150 (+GST).

If you apply from 1 July 2022, an Initial Application fee of $250 (+GST) will be charged, and an Annual Renewal fee of $150 (+GST) for each year thereafter.

What are the criteria for becoming credentialed?

The criteria for the Credential are built on the NEDC Workforce Core Competencies  and the ANZAED Clinical Practice and Training Standards for the Treatment of Eating Disorders.

These prescribe the minimum knowledge, practical skills and experience required for mental health and dietetic professionals to successfully respond to and treat people living with an eating disorder, and inform the content of professional development and training.

Applicants for the Credential will need to demonstrate:

  • Clinical Experience: Two years mental health clinical practice (mental health professionals only) / Two years clinical dietetic practice (dietitians only)
  • Introductory Training: Introduction to Eating Disorders for Health Professionals
  • Treatment Provision Training: Evidence-based treatment model for eating disorders (mental health professionals only) / Evidence-informed dietetic practice for eating disorders (dietitians only)

What is the Limited Evidence Sunset Clause?

In recognition that professionals currently practising may not have undertaken training in the mode prescribed or may not have records of having done so, we have introduced a Limited Evidence Sunset Clause has been established. Under the Sunset Clause, applicants who apply before 30 June 2022 will be able to provide written evidence of their knowledge, skill development and experience across the training requirements in place of having completed the specified training or provide certificates of training. When applying, you will be asked if you have evidence for both introductory and treatment provision training. If you respond ‘no’, you will be directed to the ‘Limited Evidence Sunset Clause’ pages to respond to the written evidence questions.

From 1 July 2022, all applicants will need to have completed the required approved training. More information about the Sunset Clause can be found here.

What will happen after I submit my application?

Once your application is submitted, the Credentialing team will check that all the required information and documentation has been provided. For applications in which the submitted information clearly meets all the criteria, the Credentialing team will approve provision of the Credential. Review and approval will be sought from the Governing Council for the assessment of more complex applications. We will aim to notify you by email about the outcome of your application within 4 weeks of submitting your application.

NEDC and ANZAED are committed to supporting the eating disorder workforce. For applicants who would like to become credentialed, but need help meeting either the Introductory Training or Treatment Provision Training criteria, or if you need help accessing supervision, free Professional Development Packages of training and/or supervision are available to help you upskill and become credentialed. For more information and to apply please visit Credential Professional Development Packages.

How long will it take for my application to be processed?

Applications will aim to be processed within 4 weeks of submitting an application.

Once I receive the Credential, what happens?

If your application for the Credential is successful, you will be provided with:

  • Access to an online portal, enabling you to build and publish your clinician profile on this website. From June 2022, your profile will be visible to treatment seekers using the ‘Find a treatment provider’ function on this website – meaning they can find and connect with you and your practice.
  • An annual certificate showing your current status as a Credentialed Eating Disorder Clinician for the current credentialing period.
  • A digital ANZAED Eating Disorder Credential badge which you can display on your practice website and/ or owned channels.
  • Use of the CEDC post-nominal.

Why won’t my profile be published until June 2022?

The ‘Find a treatment provider’ page on the website will be published once there are sufficient clinicians awarded with the Credential to populate this search function, allowing those experiencing an eating disorder, their supports and referrers to find and connect with clinicians.

How long does the Credential last?

The Credential lasts for 12 months, from July 1 to June 30 of the following year. The ongoing requirements of the Credential are 6 hours of eating disorder-specific supervision (including at least 3 hours in a 1:1 format) and 15 hours of eating disorder-specific continuing professional development (CPD) relevant to eating disorders per annum.

Can I get the Credential if I only provide treatment for one specific type of eating disorder?

Yes, the Credential is designed to support the treatment of individuals with eating disorders across all diagnostic presentations (including ARFID), from early intervention through to complex and acute presentations, both in public and private settings. The Credential aims to help people experiencing an eating disorder to more easily connect with clinicians that are able to provide eating disorder treatment relevant to their diagnosis.

If I don’t have the Credential, will I still be able to provide treatment for people experiencing eating disorders?

Yes, you will. The Credential is not compulsory. However, the Credential will make it much easier for people experiencing an eating disorder and referrers to find you, and it will provide recognition for your skills and experience.  We encourage all clinicians providing treatment for people living with an eating disorder to have accessed the required education, training and professional development needed to provide safe and effective eating disorder treatment. More information on this can be found in the ANZAED Clinical Practice and Training Standards.

Will the ANZAED Eating Disorder Credential be linked with the MBS?

The Australian Government, Department of Health is responsible for decisions regarding MBS linkage.

Do I need to be a member of ANZAED to get the Credential?

You do not need to be a member of ANZAED to apply for or be awarded the Credential. ANZAED is the peak body for eating disorder professionals involved in research, prevention, treatment, and advocacy in Australia and New Zealand. ANZAED aims to provide opportunities for collegial interaction, sharing of knowledge and resources, networking and advocacy roles to support researchers, clinicians and others working in the area of eating disorders.

If you are interested in becoming a member, you can find out more at https://www.anzaed.org.au/membership/.

Is the Credential the same for each profession and for those trained in different evidence-based treatment models?

All clinicians are awarded the same ANZAED Eating Disorder Credential, regardless of which profession you are from or which evidence-based treatment model you are trained in. For mental health professionals, being trained in one treatment model is the minimum standard. On your clinician profile on the Credential connect·ed website, it will be important to let referrers and treatment seekers know which model/s you are trained in and the diagnostic presentations for which you have the experience and skill to provide treatment.

The ANZAED Eating Disorder Credential recognises qualifications, knowledge, training, and professional development activities needed to meet minimum standards for delivery of safe and effective eating disorders treatment. It also recognises that there are a range of professions involved in the provision of treatment for people experiencing eating disorders. Scope of practice is a key consideration in all areas of professional practice, including in the provision of eating disorder treatment. Scope of practice standards are articulated by all professional and regulatory bodies, and credentialed clinicians are required to only practice within the scope of their profession and discipline.

Should I apply under the ‘Private Practice’ pathway or the ‘Public Health and Other’ pathway?

If you are a mental health professional or dietitian working in private practice in any capacity, you must apply for the Credential under the ‘Private Practice’ pathway. This could mean that you work in private practice every day of the week or one day a year. Private practice refers to positions as a sole provider, within a profession-specific clinic (for example, a psychology clinic), or as part of a multi-disciplinary clinic. This pathway is also applicable for any clinician working in a headspace centre.

If you work in private practice, you are required to be a member or registered with your professional registration body. These include AHPRA, AASW, ACA, DA, and PACFA.  In addition, mental health nurses will need to provide evidence of the ACMHN Credential as awarded by the Australian College of Mental Health Nurses Inc., nurse practitioners will need to provide certification as an endorsed nurse practitioner under the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (AHPRA), and general practitioners will need to provide evidence of their registration as a provider of Focused Psychological Strategies.

If you cease working in private practice during the credential year, and solely work in a public health or other setting, you will need to provide ANZAED with evidence of your employment (e.g. letter from your manager or employment contract) as required under the ‘Public Health and Other’ application pathway.

What constitutes employment under the ‘Public Health and Other’ pathway?

The ‘Public Health and Other’ pathway is relevant to clinicians working in all settings that are not private practice. This includes, but is not limited to:

  • Public mental health services, for example, CAMHS, CYMHS, AMHS, CMHS
  • Hospitals (public and private)
  • Eating disorder day programs (public and private)
  • Primary Health Networks
  • Local Hospital Districts
  • Inpatient treatment settings (psychiatric, medical, public and private)

If you are employed to work as a private practitioner, you should apply under the ‘Private Practice’ pathway.

I work for my local public health service. Do I need to be a member of my relevant professional body to apply?

If you are applying for the Credential under the ‘Public Health and Other’ pathway, you are not required to be a member of your professional body to become credentialed. However, you will need to provide ANZAED with evidence of your employment (e.g. letter from your manager or employment contract).

If you work for your local public health service (or other employer), and also work part-time in private practice, you should select that you practice in ‘Both’ on your application form. You will need to provide evidence of your membership or registration with your professional registration body (i.e. AHPRA, AASW, ACA, DA or PACFA), as well as evidence of your employment (e.g. letter from your manager or employment contract). In addition, mental health nurses will need to provide evidence of the ACMHN Credential as awarded by the Australian College of Mental Health Nurses Inc., nurse practitioners will need to provide certification as an endorsed nurse practitioner under the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (AHPRA), and general practitioners will need to provide evidence of their registration as a provider of Focused Psychological Strategies.

I work for my local public health service, but want to start private practice work. Is my credential under the ‘Public Health and Other’ pathway still valid?

If you commence work in private practice in any capacity (e.g., even if this is one day a month), you will need to provide ANZAED with the additional documentation required for the ‘Private Practice’ pathway.

If you were awarded the Credential under the ‘Public Health and Other’ pathway, you do not need to reapply and pay for a new Credential, but you must provide ANZAED with the additional required information for private practice work and this must be approved by ANZAED. Importantly, when you commence work in private practice, you will need to provide evidence of your membership or registration with your professional registration body (ie. AHPRA, AASW, ACA, DA, or PACFA) to be eligible for the Credential.

If you cease working in private practice during the credential year, and solely work in a public health or other setting, you will need to provide ANZAED with evidence of your employment (e.g. letter from your manager or employment contract) as required under the ‘Public Health and Other’ application pathway.

Can I only get the Credential for either the ‘Private Practice’ or ‘Public Health and Other’ pathway?

All applicants are awarded the same ANZAED Eating Disorder Credential, regardless of the application pathway. Your digital badge and post nominal will not include detail of the application pathway you applied under. The different requirements for the application pathways reflect the governance, service policies, and team support and supervision that vary across workplace settings.

If you are unsure which pathway you need to apply under, the determinant will be whether you work in private practice (including headspace) or not. If you work in private practice in any capacity (e.g. one day a fortnight), you must apply under either the ‘Private Practice’ pathway if you solely work in private practice or the ‘Both’ pathway if you work in both private practice and in a public or other employment setting.

I’m a GP but not registered as a provider of Focused Psychological Strategies. Can I get the credential?

The Credential for general practitioners is as the provider of psychological therapy, and you therefore must be a registered provider of Focused Psychological Strategies. The Credential does not reflect your role in the multidisciplinary team as medical practitioner, in medication management, or in review of eating disorder management plans.

I’m a peer worker, can I get the Credential?

Not at this time. The Credential is available to mental health professionals (psychologists, social workers, occupational therapists, counsellors, psychotherapists, mental health nurses, nurse practitioners, general practitioners, psychiatrists) and dietitians providing treatment for people with eating disorders who meet the outlined criteria. A further inclusion is for general practitioners who are registered providers of Focused Psychological Strategies and psychiatrists who are providing psychological therapy, rather than in their role as a medical practitioner.

I don’t have evidence of my training, but I have been providing eating disorder treatment for a long time. Can I apply for the Credential?

In recognition that professionals currently practising may not have undertaken training in the mode prescribed or may not have records of having done so, we have introduced a Limited Evidence Sunset Clause. Under the Sunset Clause, applicants who apply before 30 June 2022 will be able to provide written evidence of their knowledge, skill development and experience across the training requirements in place of certificates of training. When applying, you will be asked if you have evidence for both introductory and treatment provision training. If you respond ‘no’, you will be directed to the ‘Limited Evidence Sunset Clause’ pages to respond to the written evidence questions.

From 1 July 2022, all applicants will need to have completed the required approved training. More information about the Sunset Clause can be found here.

What is approved training?

From 1 July 2022, all new applicants for the Credential will need to have completed approved training under the new NEDC Training Approvals Process. This is required for both the introduction to eating disorders training and treatment provision training. NEDC will be commencing approvals for eating disorder trainings relevant to the Credential in January 2022, and all approved trainings will be listed on their website. Further information can be found here: [link]

Before 1 July 2022, you can either apply under the Limited Evidence Sunset Clause or through the standard pathway if you feel you have evidence of Introductory training that covers the areas outlined in the NEDC Core Competencies and the ANZAED Eating Disorder Treatment Principles and General Clinical Practice and Training Standards, as well as evidence of Treatment Provision Training.

Do I need to have experience providing eating disorder treatment to become credentialed?

The Credential criteria do not specify a minimum number of years working with people with eating disorders. As you commence work in this area, it is important to develop your annual continuing professional development and supervision plans to reflect your individual learning needs.

What training counts as Introductory Training?

In 2022, NEDC will commence a Training Approvals process for eating disorder training required for the Credential. From 1 July 2022, clinicians applying for the Credential will need to have completed approved training. All approved training will be listed on the NEDC website as it becomes approved.

Before 1 July 2022, clinicians are encouraged to apply with evidence of training that covers the areas outlined in the NEDC Core Competencies and the ANZAED Eating Disorder Treatment Principles and General Clinical Practice and Training Standards. If you do not have documentation of completing such Introductory Training, please apply under the Limited Evidence Sunset Clause.

What training counts as Evidence-Informed Dietetic Practice Training?

In 2022, NEDC will commence a Training Approvals process for eating disorder training required for the Credential. From 1 July 2022, clinicians applying for the Credential will need to have completed approved training. All approved training will be listed on the NEDC website as it becomes approved.

Before 1 July 2022, clinicians are encouraged to apply with evidence of training that covers the areas outlined in the ANZAED Practice and Training Standards for Dietitians Providing Eating Disorder Treatment. If you do not have documentation of completing such Evidence-Informed Dietetic Practice Training, please apply under the Limited Evidence Sunset Clause.

I will not complete my 2 years clinical practice experience until after the Limited Evidence Sunset Clause has ended, so cannot yet apply for the Credential. Can my previous Introductory and Treatment Provision Training count towards my future application?

As the Credential is new, we understand that there may be some clinicians who cannot apply during the Limited Evidence Sunset Clause period (i.e., Before 30 June 2022). Upon meeting the two years clinical practice experience, clinicians are encouraged to apply with their previously completed training, and ANZAED will aim to support you to become credentialed.

ANZAED and NEDC are committed to supporting the eating disorder workforce. If you would like to become credentialed, but need help meeting either or both the Introductory Training or Treatment Provision Training criteria, or if you need help accessing supervision, free Professional Development Packages of training and/or supervision are available to help you upskill and become credentialed. View more information and apply here.

Where can I find training and supervision support to become credentialed?

NEDC and ANZAED are committed to supporting the eating disorder workforce. If you would like to become credentialed, but need help meeting either the Introductory Training or Treatment Provision Training criteria, or if you need help accessing supervision, free Professional Development Packages of training and/or supervision are available to help you upskill and become credentialed. For more information and to apply please visit Credential Professional Development Packages.

What are the ongoing professional development requirements each year?

As an ongoing requirement of the Credential, all clinicians must complete a minimum of 15 hours of continuing professional development (CPD) relevant to eating disorders per year and complete a minimum of 6 hours of eating disorder-specific supervision per year, including at least 3 hours in an individual (1:1) format.

You are required to submit a CPD Plan for each year of your Credential (1 July – 30 June). Whilst not needing to include precise dates or times of upcoming CPD activities, this plan will need to correspond with your own professional development needs and goals. The CPD Plan should include your professional learning needs specific to the area of eating disorders treatment, and an annual activity plan which supports learning and skill development in these areas.

You are also required to submit a Supervision Plan for each year of your Credential (1 July – 30 June). Your Supervision Plan should include your professional learning needs specific to the area of eating disorders treatment, and a plan for the year which outlines supervision activities that will support learning and skill development in these areas, including plans for supervision format (i.e., individual, group, peer). Specific planned dates or times of the planned supervision sessions are not required.

Does my supervisor need to be from the same profession as me?

The Credential does not specify the profession of a supervisor. It is important when finding a supervisor that they have expertise in eating disorder treatment and can support you to consolidate your knowledge and skill in providing treatment for people with eating disorders. Professional Development Packages including free supervision sessions are available for clinicians who are not yet connected with a supervisor. You can read more about it here.

Does my supervisor need to be an approved supervisor or have particular qualifications?

Your supervisor is not required to be an approved supervisor or have any particular qualifications, however it is essential that they have experience in eating disorder treatment and can support you through reflective practice approaches and in your eating disorder treatment provision. It is strongly recommended that they are a Credentialed Eating Disorder Clinician or are eligible to become one.

Where can I find a supervisor that specialises in eating disorder treatment?

NEDC and ANZAED are working to ensure that supervision and professional development opportunities are available for clinicians to support them meeting the Credential criteria and their ongoing work in eating disorder treatment. If you need help finding a supervisor, please apply for a free supervision session through a Professional Development Package provided through NEDC. NEDC will coordinate your training and/or supervision package and connect you with providers of training and supervision. View more information here.

Does peer group supervision discussing eating disorder treatment count towards the supervision requirement?

Yes, but this can only be counted for up to 3 of the total 6 hours supervision requirement and you will still need to complete 3 hours of individual (i.e. 1:1) supervision which can be accessed through telehealth or in person. Reflective practice is a crucial component of supervision, and it is important that peer supervision supports you in your own learning and development goals in the area of eating disorder treatment.

Can reading about eating disorders count as my 15 hours of CPD?

Yes, but the reading will need to specifically relate to the CPD Plan that you submitted when you applied for the Credential. It is important that your CPD Plan adequately reflects your learning and development needs as you expand and grow your eating disorder knowledge and skill.

Do I need to submit records of my CPD or supervision activities each year?

No, you do not have to submit records of your CPD or supervision activities before renewing each year. However, 10% of all Credentialed Eating Disorder Clinicians will be audited each year to ensure they are meeting their CPD and supervision requirements. Credentialed Eating Disorder Clinicians must comply with any reasonable request by ANZAED to provide information in relation to the Clinician’s compliance with the Credentialing system’s Terms and Conditions, including if requested participation in audit processes for CPD, Supervision and general compliance purposes. View more information here.

Will my CPD and supervision be audited?

10% of all Credentialed Eating Disorder Clinicians will be audited each year to ensure they are meeting their CPD and supervision requirements. Credentialed Eating Disorder Clinicians must comply with any reasonable request by ANZAED to provide information in relation to the Clinician’s compliance with the Credentialing system’s Terms and Conditions, including if requested participation in audit processes for CPD, Supervision and general compliance purposes. View more information here.

I am experiencing an eating disorder and want to get help. Which professional should I see?

Seeking help is the first step towards recovery – you should be proud of taking this step.

Everyone’s experience of an eating disorder is unique – meaning the treatment you require is dependent on your symptoms and stage of recovery. We recommend connecting with your local GP to talk about your experience and treatment options. More information about treatment options can be found here.

If you are worried about yourself, and wish to speak to someone now, we encourage you to contact Lifeline on 13 11 14 or Emergency Services on 000.

I know someone who is experiencing an eating disorder and I want to help them connect to support. What type of professional should they see?

People experiencing eating disorders will require different treatment dependant on their diagnosis and stage of recovery. We recommend connecting with your local GP to talk about your experience and treatment options.

If you have not raised your concerns with the person you are worried about, and would like guidance on how to start a conversation or best support them, we encourage you to contact the Butterfly National Helpline on 1800 33 4673.

I cannot find a professional in my local area, what can I do?

ANZAED and NEDC are working hard to grow the eating disorder workforce across Australia through training opportunities. We understand that you may need support in your local area now. If you cannot find a professional near you, we recommend you contact the Butterfly National Helpline on 1800 33 4673 – they provide eating disorder and body image issues counselling support over the phone and online. Telehealth is available for mental health and medical appointments and so your GP may be able to connect you in with clinicians that offer this service and don’t necessarily practice nearby to your area.

My regular psychologist isn’t on here. Does that mean they do not meet the minimum standards for the Credential?

No. The Credential is new, which means it may take a while for clinicians to apply and appear in the treatment finder section of this website. Additionally, the Credential is not compulsory – some clinicians who meet the criteria may choose not to apply. If you are currently seeing a clinician who you think should be on the treatment finder database, we encourage you to share the website and information with them, so they can apply for the Credential.

Were people with lived experience involved in the development of the Credential and this website?

Yes. We held an in-depth national consultation process with over 900 people to develop the criteria and process for the ANZAED Eating Disorder Credential. Approximately 30% of the participants involved in the consultation were Participants included people with lived experience of eating disorders, their families and support networks.

Throughout our extensive consultation with people with lived experience of eating disorders, their families and support networks, we heard that finding a clinician who understands eating disorders is often a very difficult and long process. People with lived experience told us a system of credentialing will increase the chances of a positive first contact with treatment providers, which is important in helping people to keep taking steps towards wellbeing and recovery.