Eligibility for Behavioral Health Care Accreditation | Joint Commission
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Eligibility for Behavioral Health Care Accreditation

December 3, 2010

The Joint Commission surveys many types of organizations under the behavioral health care standards.  Accredited organizations may serve people throughout the life span or specialize in an age or disability group.  A standards applicability process in the Comprehensive Accreditation Manual for Behavioral Health Care (CAMBHC) identifies which standards apply to the various settings and populations and includes:

  • Addictions services/programs
  • Case management
  • Corrections
  • Crisis stabilization (24 hour acute care)
  • Eating disorders
  • Family preservation/wraparound services
  • Forensic programs or services
  • Foster care, traditional
  • Outpatient programs
  • Residential programs/group homes 
  • Therapeutic foster care
  • Transitional living/supervised care/supportive care
  • Vocational rehabilitation
  • Outdoor behavioral health
  • On-line behavioral health
  • Opioid treatment programs
  • Day Programs, such as day treatment, therapeutic day school, intensive outpatient, adult day care, partial hospitalization,
  • In-home Therapeutic Schools (24 Hour)
  • Programs and services for adults, children, youth, transition age young adults, persons with addictions, persons with developmental disabilities
  • Programs and services supporting recovery, such as care coordination, community integration, supported employment services, family and peer support

Any behavioral health care organization may apply for a Joint Commission accreditation survey under the standards in the Comprehensive Accreditation Manual for Behavioral Healthcare (CAMBHC) if the following requirements are met:

  • The behavioral health care organization is in the United States or its territories or, if outside the United States, is operated by the United States government, under a charter of the United States Congress, or for other behavioral health care organizations outside of the United States that meet the following criteria:
    • The nature of the behavioral health care practices in the applicant organization is compatible with the intents of Joint Commission standards;
    • With the use of available translators, as necessary, the surveyor(s) can effectively communicate with substantially all of the organization management and clinical personnel and at least half of the organization's clients, and can understand clinical/case records and documents that relate to the organization's performance; or
    • United States citizens make up at least 10% of the organization's client population OR A United States government agency contracts with the organization to provide services to United States citizens OR United States citizens preferentially use the organization in that country.
    • The organization assesses and improves the quality of its services.  This process includes a review of care by clinicians, when appropriate.
    • The organization identifies the services it provides, indicating which services it provides directly, under contract, or through some other arrangement.
    • The organization provides services addressed by the Joint Commission's standards.