Accreditation by the Joint Commission showcases your organization’s commitment to quality care and to continuous innovation. Learning more about the accreditation process and the benefits of becoming accredited can help you determine if this intensive but beneficial process is right for your brand. From the ongoing benefits of accreditation to the survey process itself, here’s what you should know about the Joint Commission and achieving independent and impartial certification of your brand’s high standards.

What is the Joint Commission?

Located in Chicago, the Joint Commission is a nonprofit organization focused on improving healthcare and patient outcomes for the public. For over 65 years, the Joint Commission has worked to accredit medical facilities, providers and services around the world. The mission of the Joint Commission is simple; to constantly hold health care organizations and programs to the highest possible standard and to provide the public with peace of mind about their chosen, accredited provider. Accreditation can help your brand stand out in a crowded marketplace, attract high quality workers and give you a competitive edge; it can also ensure your facility remains at the forefront of the industry.

Benefits of Joint Commission Accreditation for Healthcare Organizations

Joint Commission Accreditation is a signal to patients and providers that your facility takes quality care and patient safety seriously. A facility that has been achieved accreditation is one that can be relied on with confidence; accreditation provides prospective patients with unsurpassed peace of mind about their care. In addition to making a strong statement about patient care, accreditation offers facilities and providers a variety of benefits, including:

Mitigate risk:

Since Joint Commission standards focus on performance and improvement, regularly striving to meet or exceed the requirements needed for accreditation allows a brand to focus on risk reduction and mitigation. A rigorous, impartial survey can help highlight areas that require extra attention or to reduce patient risk or improve patient outcomes.

Educate and inform your team:

Joint Commission surveyors are skilled professionals and can often provide insight into improvements or offer fresh solutions and innovations for your brand. The preparation and internal scrutiny most facilities engage in before a survey ensures that all details and processes are truly up to date and ready for review. This allows your team to stay up to date on the latest requirements and methodologies and supports ongoing learning and training.

Gain a clear marketing advantage:

In an increasingly crowded healthcare market, accreditation can give your organization a competitive edge and provide prospective patients with one more reason to choose your facility over others. Once accreditation is achieved, this powerful marketing tool can be used by your team to support your marketing initiatives and campaigns.

Boost recruitment and retention rates:

A facility with Joint Commission accreditation is well positioned to attract high-quality providers and staff. Top performers often prefer to work with an accredited facility with opportunities for development and advancement.

Streamline and simplify Medicare certification:

For some organizations, Joint Commission accreditation provides qualification for Medicare and Medicaid certification, without the need to go through a separate and duplicate assessment by a government regulatory body. Accreditation may also fulfill compliance and regulatory requirements in some locations and states.

Learn More about Joint Commission Accreditation

Joint Commission accreditation allows your facility to position itself for growth and to prepare for future innovations in patient care. A few commonly asked questions about accreditation and the survey process are detailed below, along with their answers.

Is Joint Commission accreditation compulsory?

No; many organizations choose to pursue accreditation for the benefits it provides and to ensure they are providing the highest possible standard of care.

How is a facility awarded accreditation?

Accreditation includes a survey or intensive examination of patient care, policies and procedures in the facility. An accreditation survey is performed by professional, certified healthcare providers and is designed to discover how your facility operates and what patients can expect. Other components, including ongoing data collection, internal audit support and self-assessment and training tools make it easy for facilities to stay up to date and certified.

What can we expect from an accreditation survey?

An accreditation survey is an unannounced visit from Joint Commission surveyors to examine and evaluate the facility’s ability to comply with requirements and best practices. A survey is conducted at least once every 39 months and is conducted by a team of healthcare professionals. Your surveyor team could include physicians, administrators, expert laboratory staff and nursing professionals.

During the survey, your team will review random patient records for compliance and standards. Once a patient record is selected, your surveyors will track that patient’s entire experience with your organization. Surveyors review records, observe patient care and interact with patients to get a comprehensive idea of the level of care your team offers.

What standards are surveyors looking for?

The survey focuses on the mission of the Joint Commission and the quality and caliber of care the facility is providing. Over 250 distinct standards are addressed, covering everything from medication management to infection control and patient rights.

How long does accreditation take?

Once the on-site survey is complete, the Joint Commission will review the results and data and render a decision within two to eight weeks.

How long does accreditation and certification last?

Once awarded, your accredited status will last for three years; laboratory, stroke center and disease specific accreditation expire in two years.

Learning more about the Joint Commission and what to expect from the accreditation process can help you offer the highest possible standard of care and prepare for your accreditation survey. Once complete, your brand will enjoy all the benefits of being verified by an impartial, highly regarded third party and be able to consistently improve outcomes and experiences.

Prepare for the Joint Commission Accreditation

You don’t have to prepare for your Joint Commission accreditation survey alone; our team is focused on compliance and helping healthcare brands avoid the stressors and hassles many providers associate with an audit. Get in touch to learn more about I.S. Partners and discover how we take the anxiety out of the audit and survey process.

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