SDS Accreditation Update

AAAHC announces major new standards in '09

The Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care (AAAHC) has announced its 2009 standards, including a new chapter on lithotripsy services, as well as medical home and behavioral health services.

The revisions will be effective early this month with the publication of the 2009 Accreditation Handbook for Ambulatory Health Care.

"Ambulatory health organizations should be aware that there are some significant new standards and changes to existing standards in 2009," said John Burke, AAAHC executive director.

New standards for renal lithotripsy services include requirements related to provider responsibility, radiation safety and quality control, and written policies and procedures governing the training and experience of staff and other aspects of patient care.

Here are the highlights

Highlights of other revisions to AAAHC standards include:

  • Accredited organizations are required to notify AAAHC within 15 calendar days (previously 30 calendar days) of significant changes.
  • The quality improvement (QI) program standards have been rewritten to provide clear and specific expectations.
  • Organizations must codify the requirements to obtain prior health records for incoming patients and to provide patient information when care is provided elsewhere.
  • New standards require organizations to develop policies addressing nonstaff in patient care areas.
  • Organizations are required to develop written emergency and disaster preparedness plans.
  • All clinical personnel with direct patient contact must be trained in basic cardiac life support (BLS) in organizations that provide anesthesia services, surgical and related services, immediate/urgent care services, and emergency service. They are required to maintain BLS skills.
  • Organizations are required to have written policies regarding reprocessing of single-use devices and policies for the safe use of injectables and single-use syringes and needles.