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Having CARF Accreditation Matters in Addiction Treatment Programs

Clinically Reviewed By Dan Schimmel, LCSW, CAP
Updated On

Addiction Treatment Providers – CARF Accreditation Matters!


CARF Accreditation is a sign of quality and is a public seal of trust and commitment to quality. CARF International, founded in 1966, is an independent, nonprofit accreditor of health and human services. CARF is The Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities. The goal of CARF is that the person seeking treatment from an accreditated provider is safe, satisfied, and treated with dignity and respect.

Let’s look at a PHP, or Partial Hospitalization

Many 30 – 90 day rehabs will fall in to this category. Partial hospitalization programs are time limited, medically supervised programs that offer comprehensive, coordinated, and structured clinical services. This should include a series of face-to-face therapeutic sessions that are designed to address the addiction and other associated conditions in a setting that is not inpatient. A PHP treatment facility provides services to addicts who do not pose an immediate risk to themselves or others. Services are provided for the purpose of evaluation; treatment of a person’s condition; or to prevent relapse, hospitalization, or incarceration. Prevention programs are proactive and evidence-based, striving to reduce individual, family, and environmental risk factors, increase resiliency, and achieve individual and community wellness through a collaborative approach.

CARF’s behavioral health standards matter!

With the rapid changes and advances in rehabs for alcohol and other substance abuse treatments, CARF’s behavioral health standards matter! When you choose an accreditated facility, you are choosing a provider that has :

  • Conducted a self-study and evaluation of its conformance to the standards.
  • Submitted an application that includes detailed information about leadership, the programs and services that the service provider is seeking to accredit, and the service delivery location.
  • Had a CARF survey team conduct an onsite survey to determine the provider’s conformance to all applicable standards by observing services, interviewing persons served and other stakeholders, and reviewing documentation. Surveyors also provide consultation to the provider’s personnel.
  • Within 90 days following notification of the accreditation outcome, the provider fulfills an accreditation condition by submitting to CARF a Quality Improvement Plan outlining actions that have been or will be taken in response to the areas for improvement identified in the report.
  • Submited an Annual Conformance to Quality Report (ACQR). A provider that earns accreditation submits to CARF a signed ACQR on the accreditation anniversary date in each of the years following the award.
  • CARF maintains contact with the service provider during the accreditation tenure. Providers are also encouraged to contact CARF as needed to help maintain conformance to the standards

When you choose a CARF accredited provider for Addiction Treatment, you can rest assured that your program or facility are of the highest quality. CARF accreditation is a demonstration of superior performance for their clients. You have chosen well; a service provider that meets or exceeds internationally accepted standards and will ensure that the services you receive are among the elite for excellence. Check out the Top 10 Drug and Alcohol Treatment Centers to get started with your life in Recovery!

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