Accreditation is an important way that addiction treatment and behavioral health providers can stand out in the market. Several nonprofit groups, such as CARF International, provide accreditation that holds these providers to particular standards.
Providers must be prepared to put time and effort into the accreditation process. Fortunately, they can expect to receive numerous benefits in return. Here are five ways that you can expect accreditation to pay off.
1. Accreditation shows dedication.
Any provider that seeks accreditation must demonstrate commitment to the accrediting organization’s standards. Although there are usually fees involved in accreditation, it is much more than a financial decision. CARF International and other accreditation organizations require members to meet certain criteria and standards. Providers that fail to meet these standards, or allow them to lapse, are at risk of losing accreditation.
By receiving and maintaining accreditation, treatment providers demonstrate that they are serious about the services they provide and willing to meet the required standards.
2. Accreditation helps consumer choices.
Consumers have access to vast amounts of information about different addiction treatment or behavioral health providers. Unfortunately, so many choices can backfire by becoming overwhelming, and many consumers may not know what to look for.
In such cases, accreditation serves as a “stamp of approval” that can point patients and loved ones to the right provider. Instead of combing through different options and confusing data, consumers can look for accreditation from trusted organization to find a provider that meets valuable standards.
3. Providers receive help to improve.
One benefit to accreditation is that the accrediting organization provides the standards that members must follow. Providers do not have to guess blindly. When an addiction treatment or behavioral health provider applies for accreditation, they consent to be audited and surveyed by the accrediting organization.
Upon completing the examination, the organizations usually offer recommendations to the applicants. This third-party audit can help providers improve their practices to help them meet standards.
4. Accredited facilities attract better staff.
Quality job seekers, whether providers or administrative staff, want to work with quality facilities. Just like consumers, potential employees want a provider that aligns with their goals and standards. Behavioral health providers that receive accreditation will stand out not just among patients, but also in the job market.
By adhering to accreditation standards and demonstrating dedication to quality, facilities can attract physicians and other employees that are more likely to match their culture and values.
5. Accreditation earns member benefits.
There is a mutual connection between an accreditation organization and the member facility.
Most accreditation members receive benefits from the accreditation organization, such as access to subject matter experts and continued education and training opportunities. CARF International, for example, provides regular communications to accredited facilities, including newsletters and industry research. Accreditation also can improve a provider’s standing among governing agencies, which may also increase its budget.
Although accreditation may seem like an intimidating process, it can provide a variety of benefits to behavioral health and addiction treatment providers that seek it out. For more information about CARF International accreditation, visit the CARF website.