JCAHO stands for The Joint Committee for Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations. The JCAHO is a non-profit organization that provides information about the accreditation of healthcare providers. Being JCAHO accredited says some good things about a hospital. The hospitals are evaluated on 28 areas of performance such as infection control, patients’ rights, social services, and surgical procedures. Following are the six scores that a hospital can receive:
Accreditation with Commendation: The hospital not only meets all the standards, but proved to be outstanding overall.
Full Accreditation: The hospital meets all the standards in every area of performance.
Accreditation with Recommendations for Improvement: The hospital meets most of the standards, but in at least one critical area it does not. These hospitals are given a time frame in which they must meet this standard. If they fail to do so the accreditation is withdrawn.
Conditional Accreditation: The hospital’s performance is marginal at best. These hospitals are giving a time frame in which to improve certain areas or risk losing this status.
Denied Accreditation: The hospital failed to meet the standards.
Provisional Accreditation: This only applies to new hospitals that have passed an initial assessment. These hospitals will be assessed twice more in the coming six months. The official status will change depending on the results of these assessments.
Take a look at the answer to “How do I find a good hospital” for more information on assessing a hospital. There is also lots of great information in the article “Does Your Community Have a Good Hospital? How to Tell.”