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Addiction Association & Accreditation by State

Addiction Association & Accreditation by State

Addiction Association & Accredited Rehabs in the United States

The private drug and alcohol treatment services and programs within the United States is a billion-dollar industry, and when individuals and their families are seeking help for their addiction, they will often come across hundreds of different ads for addiction treatment. Because all this information is accessed via the Internet, it can be difficult to pinpoint the best possible treatment service, or locate one that will meet the needs and requirements of the addict. Rehabilitation referral services such as Drug Rehab Services, will help families and addicts narrow their search and get into immediate contact with the treatment programs they need. However, other families who do contact referral agencies are left filtering through different programs attempting to find the one that will suit their needs. It is also important for families and addicts to know what services offer effective treatment services, because some programs may be exaggerating their claims.

Drug Rehab Services can help families determine this, but for those who do not contact Drug Rehab Services, they will be looking for programs that will have an accreditation. Many families will want to know where they can find substance abuse treatment programs that are acknowledged by industry professionals as a legitimate and effective rehab option. They may also want to know is there a facility with licensed, credentialed professionals who have experience in substance use disorders. Within the United States, the way for families and addicts to ensure these types of requirements are met, is to choose an accredited facility, which Drug Rehab Services can help them locate. In addition to state licence procedures and requirements, many addiction and mental health treatment programs undergo the process of accreditation.

When a substance abuse treatment center is accredited in the United States, this will mean that the program/facility will have gone through a series of evaluations to achieve specific standards for client care. The process for a drug treatment program to become accredited is quite lengthy, where by the programs and therapy practices are objectively evaluated per the standards provided by accreditation agencies such as CARF, the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities or The Joint Commission, which is Americas largest accreditor of health care services. These accreditation agencies are third-party organizations, which will help an accredited treatment program ensure a person-centered approach to client care, provision of safe rehabilitation practices, adherence to policy and procedure standards, and cultural competence with special populations. Accreditation will also ensure that a treatment program will have an integrated service and coordination plan of care, medical stabilization and support, research based intervention, and all the staff do meet the training standards along with all the current health and safety standards. During the accreditation process the facility will have received onsite visits to audit management, staff credentials, program practices, and treatment outcomes. Much of this process will also include ensuring the staff are well trained with educational requirements that meet accreditation standards, along with efficient programs of addiction and co-occurring mental health disorder treatment.

There are two primary accrediting bodies within the United States, which are the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities or CARF and the Joint Commission. Most of the drug and alcohol treatment centers in the United States will seek out accreditation from these two organizations. CARF for example, will grant accreditation to more than 90 specific types of programs, 25,000 individual programs, and 3000 organizations for not only the United States, but also Canada and Europe. The Joint Commission is the nations largest accrediting body for hospitals and medical facilities. The Joint Commission is also the second largest accrediting organization for addiction rehabilitation programs in the United States. In 2013, over 13,000 addiction treatment programs voluntarily supplied information about their programs for the National Survey of Substance Abuse Treatment Services. Roughly over 21% of these addiction treatment programs were accredited by CARF, slightly over 19% were accredited by the Joint Commission, and over 56% were not accredited by either accreditation agency. State licensing is different from state to state, but the accreditation process provides specific standards across the board, and as of 2018, there is more of a push for substance abuse treatment programs in the United States to become accredited. Accreditation matters for drug treatment programs because it does demonstrate their commitment to being among the best drug rehab facilities in the country. Accredited bodies will have higher standards than the state licensing requirements, and will enact guidelines to continually improve treatment options and services.

What is the Joint Commission?

The Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations continuously improves the safety and quality of care provided to the public. It operates as an independent non-profit organization. Over 21,000 health care organizations and programs in the United States are accredited by the Joint Commission. Founded in 1951, it works to inspire healthcare organizations to excel in providing safe and effective care of the highest quality and value.

What does accreditation really mean?

Anytime someone is searching for a drug rehab center, they will hear the words accreditation. But what does it actually mean when the program says they are accredited? Along with being licensed by the state, some drug rehab centers become accredited by a third-party organization. Despite the lengthy application process and the requirements needed to be met. Does accreditation ensure the quality of care? Much of it relies on how well organized the program is and how it operates. Accreditation does ensure the quality of care, but not always. Finding the best drug rehab center is important. Yet, a program that is accredited may not be the best fit for your loved one. Which means they may not receive the quality of care and treatment they need.

Most accreditation services require the facility to incorporate current research. This means evidence-based practices, which are peer-reviewed scientific health publications. These are clinical practice guidelines and expert professional consensus. There are also specific written policies in place for individualized treatment services. Over the past decade, the studies done have shown accreditation is a valuable measure of quality. However, there are still gaps that many drug rehab centers struggle to fill. Staff qualifications are often one area where many programs have the necessary qualified staff or don’t. For example, any facility accredited by CARF requires physician oversight in certain services. Staff working at these centers must be licensed or certified. When searching for drug rehab centers, it is important to inquire what the staff qualifications are.

Accreditation requires quality assurance. For example, the Joint Commission and CARF have quality assurance requirements. This is often an analysis of patient outcomes to ensure effectiveness. Or collecting data and monitoring opportunities to improve performance. This is again another good question to ask a drug rehab center. Which is how they evaluate the effectiveness and monitor patient outcomes. However, within the different accrediting bodies there are no uniform requirements imposed on drug rehab centers. Accreditation is a good thing, but families should still ask questions and seek out the information they need.