The Anorexia Nervosa Intensive Service (ANIS), is made up of a small team who work intensively with adults who have a diagnosis of severe Anorexia.

Please note: this service is only available to people living in South Cumbria.

We are currently commissioned to work with up to fifteen individuals at any one time.

Our team includes eating disorder practitioners, psychologists, specialist dietitians and input from a psychiatrist. We will work alongside you, your family and other staff involved in your care, such as community mental health service staff and your GP, in order to understand the impact Anorexia has on your physical and psychological wellbeing and how it impacts upon how you live your life day to day.

The service is in place to bridge the gap between inpatient and community treatment, so that people can be treated within their local community, closer to home.

If you have severe Anorexia then your GP will refer you to community mental health services and from there a decision is made to involve the ANIS team. Our assessment will take place alongside community mental health services who may continue to co-ordinate your care. Our assessment will involve us talking to your GP and practice nurse and your physical health will be monitored on an ongoing basis.

We will offer you specialist dietitian input to help you develop a healthier relationship with food and meal planning, and therapy tailored to your individual needs and where appropriate to your family's needs as well.

We believe that you and your family have a great deal of knowledge and expertise about your illness and so we want you to work with us to contribute to your recovery.

  • Body Mass Index of 13 or below
  • Body Mass Index of 15 which is decreasing despite standard interventions
  • Accessing services out of county for anorexia nervosa and may have a recurrent pattern of out of county treatment
  • At significant risk because of the interaction between their anorexia nervosa and a marked physical illness and / or co-morbidity, including self-harm
  • At high risk as indicated by other physiological measures (core temperature below 34 degrees, pulse rate below 40 bpm, a systolic BP less than 80), in such circumstances it is likely that the individual will be an inpatient in which case the team will in-reach.

Referrals are accepted from GPs or other health professionals involved in care of the individual via the local Community Mental Health Team (CMHT).

All adults seen by ANIS will also be receiving care coordination in the CMHT. First Step is an alternative service providing talking therapies for people in Cumbria with eating disorders and mild to moderate conditions.


  • Beating Eating Disorders (BEAT) national charity
  • Centre for Clinical Interventions: free downloadable self-help manuals
  • Self Harm Awareness (SAFA) Cumbrian charity


  • Overcoming Anorexia Nervosa by Christopher Freeman
  • Skills based learning for caring for a loved one with an eating disorder the new Maudsley method by Janet Treasure, Grainne Smith and Anna Crane
  • Anorexia Nervosa: a survival guide for families, friends and sufferers by Janet Treasure

For carers and families