Accreditation in Action – Northside Psychological Services

Northside Psychological Services (NPS) provides a variety of counseling services to individuals and families and offers Employee Assistance Programs (EAP) for organizations within the Georgia community.

1. Which accreditation do you hold and for how long?

NPS became a part of Council on Accreditation’s (COA) Community of Excellence in 2008.  We have remained fully accredited for the past five years.

2. What was the original reason(s) for becoming accredited?

The State of Georgia requires that community service providers achieve and maintain accreditation.  Accreditation through COA gave us the opportunity to be “measured” against national standards of best practice.  That measurement confirmed that NPS services are provided by a skilled and supported workforce and that all individuals are treated with dignity and respect.

3. How has accreditation impacted the operations or functioning of your organization?

The COA accreditation process brought us together as an organization, pursuing a common goal of excellence.  Once accreditation was achieved we continued to integrate services to increase efficiency, accessibility, cultural responsiveness and to assure that our delivery system was evidence-based and outcomes-oriented.

4. What advice would you give to an organization becoming accredited for the first time?

I would recommend that organizations seriously consider not trying to “go it alone.”  It is often an uncomfortable concept to admit we can’t “do it all,” so when working toward a system wide accreditation, help from those who have been through the process would surely make progress go much more smoothly.  It would have been a more efficient and more easily understood process if we had the benefit of having Jennifer Flowers and her Accreditation Guru team on board at the time.

5. How do you motivate staff during the self-study and/or site visit phase?

We are blessed to have a great group of folks who truly want to make improvements to better our organization.  From the beginning, they embraced the desire to achieve service excellence and have become one of over 1800 agencies nationwide who have made best practices their practices.

6. How did your organization celebrate becoming reaccredited?

What better way to celebrate than with go-cart racing!  We are all young at heart, after all, and achieving our goal of accreditation was worth a race and lots of pizza, as well!

7. About Northside Psychological Services:

The mission of NPS is to educate, counsel, and equip clients and their families experiencing a variety of issues.  Our licensed and skilled clinicians specialize in psychological evaluation and testing, counseling and treatment, as well as group services for children, adolescents and adults.

Please take the opportunity to learn more at www.npsga.com.

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