MO Eating Disorders Council announces two Eating Disorders Centers for Excellence

Sub Title

Burrell Behavioral Health and Ozark Center programs receive designation

Jefferson City, MO

The Missouri Eating Disorders Council (MOEDC), founded in 2010, is pleased to announce that two Missouri community mental health centers have earned the designation of Eating Disorders Center of Excellence for providing integrated, evidence-based treatment to better serve their communities.  The Ozark Center Reconnect program and the Burrell Behavioral Health’s RecoverED program have both undergone rigorous training in the diagnosis and treatment of eating disorders and are equipped to handle the diagnosis and treatment of eating disorders in what was previously an under-served area for those suffering. 

According to Annie Seal, Chairman of MOEDC, “This increased access to care is an important service for rural Missourians. Prior to the Reconnect and RecoverED programs, care was consolidated in Kansas City and St. Louis, making complete treatment extremely difficult to obtain in Joplin or Springfield.  Both Reconnect and RecoverED deserve tremendous credit for making life-saving care available in their areas.”

Eating disorders (EDs) are common, disabling, and costly mental health problems that affect up to 10% of individuals in their lifetimes. However, there is an extremely wide treatment gap for EDs, and over 80% of individuals with EDs do not receive treatment even though eating disorders are the second most fatal of all the mental illnesses. Early intervention is important because untreated symptoms become more frequent, severe, and persistent over time, and early diagnosis combined with treatment intervention is associated with better outcomes. 

Prior to the MOEDC’s inception, there were major barriers to treatment for Missourians struggling with EDs.  Since its launch, the MOEDC has focused on positively impacting access to care throughout Missouri with two main programs:  the 360 Training Program and the Body U Program.  The 360 Training Program provides free training for healthcare providers in evidence-based therapies and promotes fully integrated care teams to meet the needs of those suffering.  

To date the MOEDC has trained over 500 healthcare providers in these therapies who work in mental health practices. Centers, like Reconnect and RecoverED, undergo the full curriculum and are trained to diagnose and treat a previously under-served population with evidence-based therapies.  

Body U is a free online program that is based on decades of research and is comprised of multiple evidence-based components, including an online EDs screening; a digital self-help program for individuals at low risk of developing an ED; a digital self-help program for individuals at high risk of developing an ED; a coached digital program for individuals with clinical/subclinical EDs other than anorexia nervosa [AN]; and referrals to providers trained by the MOEDC for those screening positive for AN. Since the launch of the Body U initiative in 2013, nearly 13,500 people have completed the Body U screen, with 41.4% (n=5,582) screening as high risk for an ED and 31.0% (n=4,182) screening positive for a clinical or subclinical ED diagnosis. This free program is available to all Missourians age 18 and older and can be accessed at

The MOEDC is proud to have helped make exceptional care available at both the Ozark Center Reconnect and Burrell Behavioral Health’s RecoverED programs.  

Seal says, “These two centers are examples of what’s possible when dedicated healthcare professionals see the pain caused by this illness and are willing to do something about it. The MOEDC’s mission is to provide treatment in areas that were previously void of eating disorders treatment.  These two centers show we can fill the gaps and make a positive difference.  I genuinely believe these treatment facilities will save lives and mitigate extreme suffering.”

For more information contact Annie Seal at (314) 591-3341, or visit Missouri Eating Disorders Council for more information on our trainings and online programs.


About the Missouri Eating Disorders Council

The Missouri Eating Disorders Council (MOEDC), under the auspices of the MO Department of Mental Health, provides eating disorders education, awareness, and treatment provider training initiatives throughout the state.  The MOEDC has two main programs: the Eating Disorders 360 Program that is focused on Missouri healthcare provider training and the Body U program that makes eating disorders treatment available in a proven, evidence-based online program. MOEDC aims to increase access to treatment throughout the state to positively impact access to, and quality of, treatment.

About The Ozark Center Reconnect Program – Ozark Center is based in Joplin, Missouri, and has been an entity of Freeman Health System since 1996. It has been providing comprehensive behavioral health services to children, adults and families since 1965 in an area that includes more than 450,000 residents from four states. Ozark Center continually looks for innovative ways to address the behavioral health needs of the community and promote awareness of behavioral health issues in an effort to eliminate the discrimination associated with it. For more information, visit or call 417.347.7600.

About Burrell Behavioral Health:
Established in 1977, Burrell Behavioral Health works with more than 40,000 clients across 25 counties in Missouri and Arkansas. Burrell has more than 400 licensed providers offering a full continuum of care through our integrated network. Services include individual therapy and counseling, addiction recovery, psychiatric and medication management, educational and therapeutic groups, crisis intervention, medication-assisted treatment, adult stabilization, case management, residential treatment, autism, diagnostic testing and evaluations and developmental disability support. Learn more about Burrell’s programs and services at