The Joint Commission
Why National Accreditation Matters for Drug and Alcohol Treatment Centers
Founded in 1969, the nonprofit Joint Commission (formerly known as JCAHO) began accrediting organizations that provide mental health and chemical dependency services in 1972. Today, less than 20 percent of the treatment facilities in the United States are accredited by the Joint Commission.
Inspire Malibu Treatment Center is proud to be accredited by the Joint Commission in behavioral health care.
The Accreditation Process and Benefits to the Patient
Accreditation is a long process of review by the Joint Commission and involves on-site inspections and an audit of the facility’s staff, training, treatment service programs, and safety compliance. Accredited facilities provide:
- Assurance of quality care
- Safe environment and rehab practices
- Health and safety standards emergency plan
- Compliance with policy and procedures standards
- Staff meets addiction and mental health treatment training standards
- Integrated services for patients
- Research-based interventions
- HIPAA compliance and adherence to policy regulations
- Peace of mind for patients and their families
Addiction By The Numbers Nationwide
The number of overdose deaths in 2016 was five times higher than in 1999, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Many of those fatalities are tied to an epidemic of opioid addiction, such as prescription painkillers and heroin. That, unfortunately, is not the whole story.
Since 2000, a staggering 600,000 Americans have struggled with addiction, dependency and substance abuse and lost their lives in the process. That statistic, according to experts, is most likely higher considering the number of drug and alcohol deaths that unreported.
Nationwide, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) estimates that somewhere in the neighborhood of 22 million people battled substance abuse disorder in 2014 alone.
Addiction is a chronic, relapsing disease of the brain. Though it’s similar to other chronic diseases, such as cancer and diabetes, addiction is more than just a physical dependency to alcohol, a given drug or any combination thereof.
Intertwined with the physiological and neurological symptoms of addiction are sometimes mental health issues like depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder or post-traumatic stress syndrome.
In some cases, these disorders cause people to self-medicate and develop a substance abuse problem.
For others, mental health disorders develop as a result of chronic addiction that rewires the brain’s circuitry, making it difficult to function without self-medicating on drugs or alcohol.
The most effective treatment for addiction does not come in a one-size-fits-all category because every individual is unique. They cope with different underlying causes that lead to self-destructive behavior and face distinct personal and professional challenges that can’t necessarily be addressed in a simple self-help setting.
Advances in addiction treatment, such as medication assisted treatment (MAT) followed up with cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), are approaches that address each person’s specific issues. These tools, along with others, are evidence-based approaches to addiction recovery and can be applied in either a residential, inpatient setting or an outpatient one.
Why Joint Commission Accreditation Matters
Public awareness about the disease of addiction has made great strides, though more education is needed to erase the stigma associated with substance abuse and dependency.
Finding the right treatment center can be a difficult task for family and friends of someone in the throes of addiction, much less the individual themselves. Knowing where to get help isn’t always clear. As a result, too many people find themselves in treatment facilities that are less than equipped to offer more than just a bed and some self-help and group therapy.
It’s estimated that more than 55 percent of treatment centers in the United States are NOT accredited.
Accreditation by the Joint Commission requires a rigorous evaluation process, where the therapy practices, approaches and addiction programs are measured by the commission’s strict standards.
Earning the Joint Commission’s seal means patients, their families and their friends can rest assured that the addiction treatment center they chose is practicing the latest and most effective approaches to recovery, as well as knowing their loved one will receive the highest level of client care.
In addition, many insurance companies and other third-party payers use Joint Commission accreditation as a way to determine if they will reimburse for treatment services.