By A.J. Plunkett
Inpatient behavioral health facilities seeking accreditation to participate in Medicare and Medicaid now have a second choice after CMS approved DNV-GL Healthcare’s first application for recognition as a national accrediting organization (AO) for psychiatric hospitals.
Until now, psychiatric hospitals had to be approved by regional CMS survey agencies or The Joint Commission.
The approval provides another option for the nation’s more than 600 psychiatric hospitals, said Patrick Horine, president of DNV-GL, the only for-profit AO of the four authorized to accredit acute care hospitals overall.
Unlike the others, DNV-GL surveys hospitals at least once every three years, as required by CMS, but then also visits hospitals in each off year to ensure they are maintaining patient safety.
The annual survey schedule helps hospitals to stay ready and stay focused on helping patients safely, Horine told Inside Accreditation and Quality recently.
During surveys at psychiatric hospitals, the survey team will have at least one member with a background in behavioral health, said Horine.
The CMS approval is effective through July 30, 2024.
DNV-GL added its psychiatric hospital standards as an appendix to its National Integrated Accreditation for Healthcare Organizations (NIAHO®) program standards for hospitals, which can be found online.
As required for CMS approval, the NIAHO® standards area based on CMS Conditions of Participation, but are also integrated with the “ISO 9001 Standard for the formation and implementation of the Quality Management System,” according to DNV-GL information.
Hospitals, acute care or psychiatric, do not have to become ISO 9001 certified, although it is encouraged as a path to better quality assurance and performance improvement, said Horine.
A.J. Plunkett is editor of Inside Accreditation & Quality, a Simplify Compliance publication.