On-site and remote consulting services are provided in the U.S. and Canada.
Healthcare organizations are facing new challenges and must continually improve their services to provide the highest quality of care at the most affordable cost. Because of the corporate trend towards downsizing and/or problems with retention, many companies do not have the ability to complete all necessary tasks related to continuous quality improvement. Adhering to complex accreditation standards can be overwhelming to many organizations that lack the time and staff to complete required reviews and revisions of policies, procedures, and practices. The gap between workload and staffing level is expected to increase significantly in the next few years. As a result, organizations have found that using external consultants is a cost-effective solution.
Consultants at Behavioral Health Resources are independent contractors who can be hired solely to accomplish a specific task or on a retainer basis. This allows an organization to obtain specialized expertise as needed. As external contractors, our consultants can provide an objective, unbiased review. Because of involvement and relationships with numerous organizations, our CARF consultants are familiar with industry “best practices.” We can guide the identification of problems and provide recommendations for more effective and efficient ways of performing work tasks and achieving accreditation readiness. The CARF consultant brings a collaborative, knowledge-based approach to every project resulting in measurable results. For more information about the consulting process, click here.
Organizations Not Considering Accreditation. Although the primary focus of Behavioral Health Resources is to help organizations prepare for and maintain CARF accreditation, we also provide many of the same services for organizations that do not plan to pursue accreditation. Information about available services can be found in the Consulting Services section.
Organizations Considering Accreditation. If your organization is not yet accredited and you are considering accreditation, consulting services can be useful to explain the accreditation process, discuss how to prepare for an initial survey, and assess accreditation readiness. Once a decision has been made to apply for initial accreditation and the organization has been implementing all CARF standards for at least two months, a Mock Survey can be a very useful approach. Visit the Consulting Services section for additional information.
Accredited Organizations. For organizations that are already accredited, there are three key periods during which consulting services can be especially beneficial. These are:
- Immediately following a survey or re-survey. CARF will send the Accreditation Report to the organization about six to eight weeks following the conclusion of the survey. The organization is then required to submit a Quality Improvement Plan (QIP) within 90 days for a Three-Year Accreditation. (For One-Year and Provisional Accreditations, the QIP is due within 45 days.) The QIP addresses each cited recommendation and indicates the corrective action. A CARF consultant can assist in the preparation of an effective QIP.
- During the accreditation period (i.e., for continuous quality improvement). In order to maintain accreditation, organizations are required to continuously demonstrate conformance to the standards as well as implementation of annual updates regarding revisions and new standards. (CARF standards manuals are relevant for the period of July 1 through June 30.) To this end, organizations are expected to become knowledgeable about (and incorporate) these changes into policies, procedures, and practices. Because of this requirement, organizations are encouraged to obtain (and apply) the new standards manual when published each year.
- Preparing for a re-survey. It is beneficial for organizations to begin preparation for a re-survey at least 12 months in advance. Our consultants have in-depth knowledge of CARF standards and annual updates. This is especially important for the organization preparing for a re-survey as many standards may have changed (or been added) since the previous survey. We can assist the organization with interpretation of the standards, effectively resolve cited recommendations, and develop (or update) policies, procedures, and practices to consistently meet conformance with new and revised standards.
For a description of specific services available to assist your organization with preparation for a re-survey and/or continuous quality improvement, refer to the Consulting Services section.
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