Increased Precautions We're Taking in Response to COVID-19

LAST UPDATED ON 10/09/2020

As updates on the impact of the coronavirus continue to be released, we want to take a moment to inform you of the heightened preventative measures we have put in place at McCallum Place Eating Disorder Center to keep our patients, their families, and our employees safe. All efforts are guided by and in adherence to the recommendations distributed by the CDC.

Please note that for the safety of our patients, their families, and our staff, on-site visitation is no longer allowed at McCallum Place Eating Disorder Center.

  • This restriction has been implemented in compliance with updated corporate and state regulations to further reduce the risks associated with COVID-19.
  • Options for telehealth visitation are continuously evaluated so that our patients can remain connected to their loved ones.
  • Alternate methods of communication for other services may be offered when deemed clinically appropriate.

For specific information regarding these changes and limitations, please contact us directly.

CDC updates are consistently monitored to ensure that all guidance followed is based on the latest information released.

  • All staff has received infection prevention and control training.
  • Thorough disinfection and hygiene guidance has been provided.
  • Patient care supplies such as masks and hand sanitizer are being monitored and utilized.
  • Temperature and symptom screening protocols are in place for all patients and staff.
  • Social distancing strategies have been implemented to ensure that patients and staff maintain proper distance from one another at all times.
  • Cleaning service contracts have been reviewed for additional support.
  • Personal protective equipment items are routinely checked to ensure proper and secure storage.
  • CDC informational posters are on display to provide important reminders on proper infection prevention procedures.
  • We are in communication with our local health department to receive important community-specific updates.

The safety of our patients, their families, and our employees is our top priority, and we will remain steadfast in our efforts to reduce any risk associated with COVID-19.

The CDC has provided a list of easy tips that can help prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue and then immediately dispose of the tissue.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Clean and disinfect objects and surfaces that are frequently touched.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Stay home when you are sick, except to get medical care.

For detailed information on COVID-19, please visit https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html

Blog

Healing Self Judgment with Improvisation

Written by Rachel Makorsky, LCSW, Therapist at McCallum Place Austin

Many of us have experienced self-judgment and self-critical thinking. It does not feel good. For clients suffering from an eating disorder, self-judgment can be a common challenge.

Currently at McCallum Place Austin, we facilitate an innovative group called “Therapeutic Improvisation.” The rules, skills and lessons of improvisation not only apply to the art of making people laugh, but also to the pursuit of a happy life, a healthy business, loving relationships and healing the mind.

In improvisation, the first and most important rule is to address every offer and every suggestion with an agreement. We describe this by teaching the following response: “yes, and.” This means that everything is accepted, respected and contributed to. For example, if I said, “Wow, everyone at the party is wearing green”, you would not just say, “yes, they are.” The person could reply with, “yes, don’t you just love it?! I’m so glad we decided to vacation in Oz this year. This is the Emerald City.” Now we have a scene. We are in agreement and from there, we can play and create something innovative and spontaneous together.

In life, we may have experienced a scene something more like this: “Wow, everyone at the party is wearing green.” Response: “No they are not, they’re wearing blue,” or “Yeah, didn’t you get the memo? You like silly in your pink dress.” Ouch! These second examples, as negative as they may sound, more likely reflect the way a critical or perfectionistic mind can respond to things. Negative self-talk can go on for so long or so far back in time that we truly do not recognize how frequent or cruel it can be. A mind can silently attack and criticize anything, from the way a room looks to our appearance. There can be a critical thought for anything.

For clients who are dealing with self-judgment, restriction or control, learning the skills of improvisation can be a healing antidote. In our group at McCallum Place Austin, we create a safe and supportive space to practice the art of saying anything. We are learning how to cultivate the ability to say “Yes, and” to each other and to ourselves. One of the first things that often happens is that clients begin to relax, lighten up and laugh. This is a good first sign.

There is an exercise we teach called the Yes And Story. First, we make up a title of a story that has never been told and then we begin. Sitting in a circle, one person at a time says a sentence or two, telling up our made up story. Each person contributes something to the story and begins with the words “Yes, and…”. Together we create a story that flows and curves and becomes funnier and more creative than anything one person could have created on their own.

From the outside looking in, when we tell the story everyone looks very interested, engaged and like they are having a good time. On the inside, the brain is learning a new way of experiencing and processing life. We are training our minds to agree, accept and say okay to things while releasing the habit of judging. After a little practice, we begin to realize that it feels more relaxing and fun to live life in the present moment, suspending judgment and just allowing things to simply be as they are. We even learn to laugh, appreciate and enjoy ourselves.

The more we make our thoughts just thoughts and the more we say “okay” to the thoughts in our mind (both the good and the bad), the less judgmental we feel. As the judgments begin to fall away, the real person emerges. There is authenticity, lightness and calm.

Laughter brings out the realness in a person. It is always good medicine.

Rachel Madorsky is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and a contract therapist at McCallum Place Austin. She is the owner of Austin Counseling and Relationship therapy. Rachel earned her bachelor of fine arts from Syracuse University in New York and her master of social work from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio. In addition to her work as a psychotherapist, Rachel is a professional actor and improviser. She is a graduate of The Second City Conservatory and has performed and taught in improv festivals around the country.