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Howard Memorial Hospital Receives Full Accreditation from the Joint Commission

Awards & Recognition


Date: February 13, 2007

Contact: Anthony Stahl
Director HR/Marketing
Howard Memorial Hospital

Willits - Howard Memorial Hospital has again received a Gold Seal of ApprovalTM, signifying "full accreditation" from the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations, Kevin Erich, President/CEO, announced today. This comes after an unannounced and comprehensive review of hospital operations, procedures, and patient care.

The accreditation is for three years. The Joint Commission is an independent healthcare organization responsible for rigorous evaluations and accreditation of nearly 15,000 hospitals and other healthcare organizations in the U.S. Unlike state health inspections or licensure, the Joint Commission is voluntary and focuses on improving and providing consulting services to health organization.

"This is a real tribute to the hard work of doctors, nurses and staff," commented Erich. "This thorough evaluation reinforces the fact that Howard Memorial Hospital is an outstanding facility and one for which our community can be proud."

The weeklong, on-site review took place January 23-26 and consisted of a visit by a two-member joint commission team. Hospitals are surveyed every three years with an unannounced visit and the review is considered critical to a hospitals reputation stated Betty Hawks, Director of Quality, Risk and Accreditation. In addition the Lab is surveyed every two years.

Karen Scott, Vice President for Patient Care said, "The Joint Commission uses a tracer methodology in reviewing hospital standards and procedures. The methodology involves surveyors following the specific course of patients from admission to discharge as well as tracing system processes. This method places great emphasis on patient care, service, delivery, and outcome as well as patient safety."

"It's becoming more challenging to obtain full accreditation from the Joint Commission," commented Sue Atherton, Howard Hospital's, Joint Commission Coordinator. "The standards are becoming more and more stringent. However, we continue to meet the standards not only because of outstanding personnel, but in part through training and education."

The Joint Commission is the nation's predominant standard setting and accrediting body in health care. Since 1951, it has maintained state-of-the-art standards that focus on improving the quality and safety of care provided by health care organizations. Its accreditation process evaluates an organizations compliance with these standards and other accreditation requirements.