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Working with the Joint Commission

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Achieving and maintaining accreditation a vital part of the healthcare industry in America. The Joint Commission offers the best-known and trusted accreditation service—but it’s a process that only works through careful preparation. As a medical facility requiring staff training before a survey, it’s important that everyone knows exactly what to expect.

If you’re a language services provider hoping to work in the medical field, you must also abide by accreditation standards. To this end, Global Arena offers an interactive eLearning course, Working with the Joint Commission. By the end of this course, participants understand the importance of accreditation and how to maintain standards every day.

What is the Joint Commission?

Founded in 1951, The Joint Commission is a U.S.-based, non-profit organization. It’s responsible for accrediting over 22,000 healthcare organizations and programs. The organization also has an international branch to accredit and standardize medical services across the globe. Their goal 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 providing safe and effective care of the highest quality and value”. They achieve this through establishing hospital safety and quality standards, combined with evaluations and collaboration with staff and stakeholders.

The Joint Commission is the nation’s oldest and largest standards-setting and accrediting body in health care. They’re considered the “gold standard” of healthcare accreditation.

The Joint Commission has two nonprofit affiliate organizations. The Joint Commission Center for Transforming Healthcare aims to solve health care’s most critical safety and quality problems. They offer tools, training programs, and (especially of note), the TRIO Program. TRIO is an acronym for “Trust, Report, and Improve Organizations.” The program works to support a healthcare organization’s internal structure and culture.

Joint Commission Resources (JCR) offers educational services, publications, and software to complement the accreditation experience. JCR offers a digital learning center with courses covering various healthcare topics. JCR also includes Joint Commission International (JCI). JCI is the division that accredits and certifies international health care organizations.

Accreditation with The Joint Commission

Accreditation is a voluntary process—theoretically, a healthcare provider doesn’t “need” to be accredited to offer services. So why do hospitals and other healthcare providers pursue accreditation with The Joint Commission?

  • Medicare and Medicaid: Accreditation from The Joint Commission or another federally approved organization is required for healthcare providers to receive payment from Medicare and Medicaid programs.
  • Patient Safety: One of The Joint Commission’s missions is to promote patient safety. As healthcare providers naturally have the same goal, meeting Joint Commission standards is an excellent way to achieve it.
  • Community Recognition: Joint Commission accreditation solidifies an organization’s position in their community. Patients can trust that their healthcare provider prioritizes quality care–especially as it’s a voluntary process.
  • Access to Resources: After going through the accreditation process, organizations have access to classes, texts, resources, and professionals to continue their development. This creates an environment of consistent improvement.
  • Decreasing Costs: Implementing Joint Commission standards decreases costs, through time and labor management, as well as efficiency practices.
  • Professional Recognition: Providers accredited by the Joint Commission are professionally recognized for the standards they uphold. Accreditation makes a healthcare provider a good choice for partnerships with insurers and managed-care organizations. These organizations can trust that a Joint Commission accredited facility is committed to quality and safety.

Benefits of Standardization

Finding a Balance Between Standardized Care and Personalized Care

The Joint Commission, at its heart, is an organization dedicated to creating and upholding standards in the healthcare industry. Standardization is beneficial to all areas of healthcare. Variation in care, costs, and outcomes exists across hospitals, states, and regions. Creating and adhering to standards uses evidence-based medicine in a systematic way to ensure patients receive high-quality care.

While care varies necessarily by region, standardizing best practices is an important part of delivering effective, safe, and affordable care. There are numerous benefits to standardized care:

  • Consistency
  • Measurability
  • Improved patient safety
  • Improved quality of care
  • Effective documentation
  • Reduced waste
  • Labor/time savings
  • Improved efficiency
  • Reduced costs

Standardizing care also means standardizing how we measure outcomes. This means that we can collect data from a broad variety of sources and compare it in meaningful ways. The ability to analyze and compare data makes it possible to identify places for improvement and prioritize it appropriately. A standardized workplace is a safe and growing workplace, too.

It’s highly important to note that standardizing care doesn’t mean a departure from personalized care. The two can and should coexist. Standardization, in fact, makes it easier for healthcare professionals to provide personalized care. Safe, quality systems and organizations that adhere to predetermined standards allow healthcare professionals to work with patients directly. Together, they can create treatment and care plans without unnecessary complications and expenses. Standardization is only a tool in creating the best patient outcomes, supporting personalized care and experience.

Course Description

The course opens with foundational knowledge about the Joint Commission and the importance of standardization. Includes information about upholding language services standards and appropriately compiling paperwork, which will be useful to staff interpreters and patient relations personnel. We cover a glossary of common terms associated with accreditation and thorough descriptions of Joint Commission offerings.

The second module opens with a description of on-site survey priorities. We cover preparing for an inspection and different roles within the facility. The course launches an in-depth explanation of every step of the on-site survey process. Every survey is a little different depending on the facility type and the programs for which you’re applying for accreditation. The course is customizable to fit your organization’s needs. The base course includes information about every step applicable to all programs.

Finally, we discuss receiving and responding to results on the SAFER matrix and tips for upholding standards every day. The course concludes with a comprehensive exam to complement the mini exams throughout the modules. Upon successful completion, participants receive a certificate to mark their accomplishment.

Duration and Format

The course is timed to last for 45-60 minutes. It consists of two modules, each with interactive mini-review activities. The course concludes with an exam and a certificate upon completion and a passing exam result. Each module consists of a variety of informational slides, in both interactive and lecture formats. This broadly engages participants, ensures retention, and encourages application. The mix of different slides adds not only visual interest but targets different learning styles to fit all needs. The course is fully narrated.

The course is entirely online and easily accessible from our e-learning platform. It requires no downloads or special permissions. As an employer, there’s another advantage to using our system: you’re able to track your employees’ progress and completion rates. If you’re working as an independent contractor, you can access your account any time and see your status. You also have full access to our course catalogue and resource.

The information is updated regularly to meet current standards. Courses can be taken within one year of course purchase. After one year, if the course has not been completed, the program will be eliminated from the trainee’s dashboard. Certificates are accessible at any time.

Our eLearning courses are easily accessible from your mobile device. If you’re working with an organization, Working with the Joint Commission is further customizable to fit your team’s needs. Please feel free to contact us with any questions or for more information.

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