Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO)
March 31, 2013
Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations
The Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations or JCAHO was founded in 1951 as a private nonprofit organization that established guidelines for the running and management of hospitals and health care facilities in the United States. According to its website (n.d.), JCAHO’s primary mission is, “To continuously improve health care for the public, in collaboration with other stakeholders, by evaluating health care organizations and inspiring them to excel in ...view middle of the document...
Then in 1951, the corporate members of the American College of Physicians (ACP), The American Hospital Association (AHA), the American Medical Association (AMA), and the Canadian Medical Association (CMA) join the ACS to create the Joint Commission of Accreditation (JCAH). By 1952 the ACS completely gives up its role of hospital standardizing to the JCAH permanently. In 1953, under the first directorship of Edwin L. Crosby, M.D. the JCAH begins accrediting hospitals and the Joint Commission also publishes the first Standards for Hospital Accreditation manual (The Joint Commission, n.d.).
It is not however until 1987, that the JCAH changes it name to the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO). It does this to reflect its expanding role in the review and accreditation of all sorts of healthcare settings, not just hospitals. The Board of Commissioners of the Joint Commission consists of 32 members. These members are made up of those professionals, advocates and educators who can best bring their diversity of experiences in direct healthcare, business, and public policy together to form the foundation for the accreditation network. There are approximately 1,000 surveyors employed in the JCAHO. Its central office is in Oakbrook, Illinois, but its office in Washington, D.C., is its direct contact with the government and provides a partnership with the government in helping to improve the quality of healthcare for the United States. This partnership allows the Joint Commission to work directly with Congress to help pass legislation to improve the quality and safety of healthcare for all Americans (The Joint Commission, n.d.).
As the nation’s oldest and largest hospital standards and accrediting body the Joint Commission has over the past 60 years made many changes to its accrediting and certifications processes. In conjunction with government review and oversight it has established many practices for the continual overview and renewal of accreditation of healthcare facilities to include general, mental or behavioral health, children’s hospitals, and rehabilitation facilities. The surveying process looks at a facilities or organization’s performance in important performance standards. Performance standards for patient safety and rights, treatment and medication safety, and infection control are the main focus. The standards used to evaluate organizations are developed working closely with those people with the best knowledge to develop them, the healthcare experts, providers, and the consumers of the care-the patients.
The surveys are meant to be specific and consistent and are not just used to evaluate the organizations for improvement but are also to educate in the best practice standards adopted throughout health care and to help staff in ways to continually improve an organizations performance. For this purpose, in 1996 the Quality Check...