What can you tell me about NoTube Organization?
NoTube supports families with children with tube dependency, working with the “Graz model of tube weaning”.
We help children who are “stuck” on a feeding tube in absence of a medical need for it. Although the children are able to eat from a physiological point of view, they show signs of oral aversion and food refusal. We help them overcome this obstacle and finally be able to eat orally and sustain their nutritional needs. Furthermore, we help all children with early eating behavior disorders, such as selective eating disorder, infantile anorexia…
Where are you located?
The LLC is located in Switzerland and Austria. We offer online options (so families from all over the world can reach us without the need of travelling long distances, which is a big advantage for medically fragile children) as well asonsite options in different countries all over Europe. Our EAT Campus will be open in April 2016, in Graz, Styria!
Who is on your team?
We have an interdisciplinary team consisting of:
- Pediatricians (Marguerite Dunitz-Scheer and Prof Scheer have developed the Graz model of tube weaning, they have weaned thousands of children)
- Clinical Psychologists (Sabine and Karoline are also Dr in Medical Sciences and have published a lot on the themes of tube feeding and weaning)
- Physiotherapist (Eva. who looks back on 25 years of working with children with eating disorders)
- Music Therapist (Birgit, who is also a social pedagogue and is quite experienced in her work with special needs children) ,
- Psychosocial counselor
- Non-medical professionals (marketing, financial department, IT…)
What made you develop an organization for No Tubes?
Our program “Graz model of tube weaning” has been developed and evaluated in the University Children’s Hospital of Graz. Due to the increased number of interested families from all over the world, we wanted to offer services in order to help all these families adequately. We are absolutely not against feeding tubes and know that they fulfill a life-sustaining function. But when it comes to the weaning phase, not many professionals are trained and interested, so many children stay stuck on a feeding tube in absence of medical needs for it. These are the children we want to help. As said, we also offer feeding therapy for children with other early eating disorders.
How do you offer help?
Tube weaning via Netcoaching – treatment via as specialized online platform, standardized protocol of reducing tube feeds, daily contact to our experts including messages, video analysis, weight and intake evaluation. This helps children who are medically fragile as there is no need to travel; furthermore the family saves the whole travel costs and stays home in its familiar environment. Over 90% of all children participating can be weaned completely off their feeding tubes! There is no duration limit, we treat the child until it has reached his/her full potential.
“Learn to eat” program – online coaching for children with all kinds of early eating disorders
Eating Schools in our EAT Campus in Graz: 2 weeks intensive support onsite by our interdisciplinary team in addition to the Netcoaching!
Play picnics: all over Europe, to get in touch with our philosophy and programs, our team members currently travel to different locations in France, Sweden, the Netherlands, Great Britain, Switzerland and are willing to come to other countries if wished.
Home visits by our medical experts for children with tube dependency and early eating disorders in order to help the family’s onsite.
Can you give some examples of how you have helped?
We treat children with different underlying medical diagnoses: extreme prematurity or birth complications, heart defects, metabolic diseases, malformations or diseases of gastrointestinal tract, genetic syndromes, psychosomatic/psychiatric diseases, neurological diseases, oncological diseases, renal diseases… who suffer from tube dependency. Furthermore, we work with children with different kinds of eating disorders such as highly selective eating, infantile anorexia, eating disorders in children with autism…
Please have a look at our patient’s testimonials: :https://www.notube.com/tube-weaning-success-stories
How do you think your organization can help children living with FPIES and feeding tubes? Also, how can you help families looking to avoid the necessary placement of a tube?
Before tube placement, we could evaluate the current nutritional state and situation with the doctors onsite and give specialized advice and help with the decision about tube feeding and support children during the phase of tube feeding or to help optimize the nutrition in case a feeding tube can be avoided from a medical point of view. For children who got tube dependent we can help with weaning keeping the special situation of FPIES patients in mind.
This post is a written interview with NoTube and The FPIES Foundation Executive Directors.