Those of us at Lutheran Social Services have been busy gearing up for our upcoming Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitative Facilities (CARF) reaccreditation in May 2014. Employees have been participating in the CARF Education series and every department has been dedicated to preparations for the upcoming survey. While having this accreditation is important to our employees, it’s truly something we do for those we serve.
What does CARF Accreditation Mean to Those We Serve?
As an independent, nonprofit accreditor, CARF is solely focused on the health and human services community. Since 1966, being CARF accredited has assured the public that an organization has demonstrated conformance to proven high standards. Professionals and consumers from a variety of backgrounds and perspectives work to set these standards; always taking in to consideration those served.
CARF Accreditation is more than a certificate hanging on the wall; it is an assurance to our consumers that we continue to conform to national standards of best practices and thoughtfully review and revise our policies and procedures in the best interest of our consumers.
In preparing for our CARF survey, our Compliance and Quality Department has reached out to every department at LSS. Once the CARF standards were reviewed, assignments were distributed to our “CARF Champions” and the process of compiling policies, procedures and sample documentation for every CARF standard began. By the end of March 2014 the Compliance and Quality department had created a database of all the documents our surveyors could possibly request. When the surveyors visit our facilities, we want them to have access to any documentation they request.
In addition to documentation, we have prepared each of our offices and facilities for visiting CARF surveyors. Surveyors will take the time to interview not only employees and board members but those who receive our services as well. This is part of what makes CARF Accreditation so important to LSS and so valuable to our consumers.
Accreditation is achieved when the CARF surveyors have determined that Lutheran Social Services is dedicated to maintaining the standards set forth by CARF. Accreditations are earned in either one or three year increments with the three year accreditation being reserved for organizations who demonstrate the highest level of commit to the CARF standards.
Dates for our CARF survey are set for May 27 -29, 2014 and LSS is anxious to begin the process and receive our new accreditation. Check here for an update on our new accreditation soon!