Half-Day Eating Disorders Educational Event

Join other providers and educators from across Connecticut for this special continuing education half-day conference. You’ll learn about some of the latest clinical best practices around eating disorders, co-morbid diagnoses and more!


7:30 – 8:00 a.m. Registration
8:00 – 9:45 a.m. Session I: Eating Disorders and Substance Use Disorders: Clinical Interventions and Treatment Overlap
9:45 – 10:00 a.m. Break
10:00 – 11:45 a.m. Session II: Borderline Personality Disorder and Eating Disorders

Walden Behavioral Care has applied for 3.5 hours of continuing education for psychologists, nurses, social workers and mental health counselors/professional counselors. Dietitians will receive certificates of attendance.


Eating Disorders and Substance Use Disorders: Clinical Interventions and Treatment Overlap
Rebekah Bardwell Doweyko, LPC, CEDS

Substance Use Disorders (SUDs) and Eating Disorders occur together frequently. Commonalities include impulsivity and use of poor coping skills which lend to difficulty in reaching the core function of the addiction and behaviors that come from both disorders. Recommendations for treatment of patients with a SUD and eating disorder and the importance of provider collaboration throughout care will be presented.

After this presentation, attendees will be able to:
1) Understand how the addiction model can be helpful and unhelpful within eating disorder treatment
2) Identify where to send a patient who is struggling with both a SUD and eating disorder
3) Identify where the two disorders overlap the most in symptomology
4) Describe helpful interventions specific to this population

Borderline Personality Disorder and Eating Disorders
Rebecca Bernat, LICSW

Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) is a cluster -B personality disorder, the essential feature of which is a pattern of marked impulsivity and instability of affect, interpersonal relationships and self-image. The pattern is present by early adulthood and occurs across a variety of situations and contexts. Frequently, patients presenting with an eating disorder can also present with a co-morbid diagnosis of BPD, resulting from a variety of differing circumstances. This presentation will discuss the conjunction between these two diagnoses and the best practices for treating this population.

After this presentation, attendees will be able to:
1) Identify the signs and symptoms indicative of Borderline Personality Disorder and eating disorders.
2) Understand the relationship between Borderline Personality Disorder and eating disorders.
3) Describe helpful interventions specific to this population


Rebekah Bardwell Doweyko, LPC, CEDS
Assistant Vice President, Clinical Operations, Connecticut Region
Rebekah Bardwell Doweyko is the Assistant Vice President of Clinical Operations for Walden Behavioral Care’s Connecticut region. In this role, she is responsible for program development and clinical, administrative and fiscal oversight of ambulatory clinics in Amherst, Mass., South Windsor, Conn. and Guilford, Conn., as well as clinical oversight of Connecticut’s first inpatient unit for eating disorders in Vernon, Conn. While at Walden, Rebekah has developed and implemented various specialized treatment tracks to further aid individuals on their journey to recovery. This includes a survivor track for those who experienced trauma, a substance abuse track and most recently a bariatric track designed for patients who are pre-or post-bariatric surgery. Prior to joining Walden, she was an Intensive Care Manager at the Connecticut Behavioral Health Partnership (Value Options, Inc.) in Rocky Hill, Conn., where she conducted clinical trainings and managed CT Medicaid cases with complex eating disorder issues. Rebekah also founded and directed the Intuitive Eating Program (IOP) at Hollywood Pavilion Hospital in Hollywood, Fla., where she developed the “Real-Life Excursion” program allowing patients to begin their transition from Residential treatment, and held various clinical positions at The Renfrew Center in Coconut Creek, Fla. She composed the foreword to the highly acclaimed “Maintaining Recovery from Eating Disorders” self-help book by Naomi Feigenbaum and was featured in the Emmy Nominated HBO Documentary “THIN.” Rebekah earned her Master’s degree in Mental Health Counseling from Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, FL, is a Licensed Professional Counselor in the State of Connecticut and is a Certified Eating Disorder Specialist.
Rebecca Bernat, LICSW
Program Director, Residential Programs
Rebecca Bernat is the director of residential programs at Walden. She is responsible for ensuring effective and efficient clinical programming for the programs, while managing the staffing, selection, discipline, development and supervision of staff. Previously, Ms. Bernat spent several years as director of Walden’s Braintree clinic where she was responsible for providing clinical, administrative and fiscal oversight and development for the clinic. Formerly, she worked 10 years as a clinical administrator at Germaine Lawrence, a treatment center for adolescent girls with complex behavioral, psychological and learning challenges. During this time, Ms. Bernat obtained extensive understanding, training and skills in dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT) and cognitive behavioral therapy, family-based treatment and adolescent development. Over the past several years, she has managed an outpatient practice in Brookline, working with adolescent girls and facilitating DBT treatment. She also sits on a weekly consultation team at McLean Hospital and provides outpatient clinical supervision. She earned her master’s degree from Simmons College and has been DBT- trained through Marsha Linehan’s Behavioral Tech LLC.