Time is running out for Qualified Residential Treatment Programs to get accredited.

Family First Prevention Services Act
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The Accreditation Guru team has been busy training and supporting provider organizations, state agencies and private foundations about how best to implement the requirements of the  Family First Prevention Services Act (FFPSA).

When it passed FFPSA in February 2018, Congress aimed to change the face of child welfare, in part by implementing a funding shift that restricts the use of Title IV-E financing for out-of-home “congregate care” placements. One section of FFPSA defines a Qualified Residential Treatment Program (QRTP), which is one of the few settings that will be allowed to receive federal reimbursements after the first two weeks a child has been in care.

FFPSA specifies that to be considered a Qualified Residential Treatment Program (QRTP), the program must be licensed and accredited by an HHS approved accreditor by October 1, 2019, unless a state requests a delay for up to two years. The approved accrediting bodies are CARF, Council on Accreditation (COA) and The Joint Commission.

Articles and Resources

The following articles and fact-sheets help explain the accreditation mandate for QRTPs under FFPSA, the benefits of accreditation (beyond fulfilling a mandate), readiness questions and other relevant information.

Click here to read FFPSA legislation (the FFPSA-related statue is on pages 169-206).

Testimony of Jerry Milner, Acting Commissioner for the Administration on Children, Youth, and Families, on the Family First Prevention Services Act.

Visit our blog for many more articles and videos about accreditation and nonprofit governance.

Time Required to Achieve Accreditation

Many organizations underestimate the time required to prepare for and become accredited. In general, it takes 12 to 18 months to prepare for national accreditation, sometimes more, sometimes less, depending on the initial state of readiness. Client agencies have found that working with Accreditation Guru has saved them precious time during this preparation period.

Keep in mind that the accrediting bodies only have a finite amount of capacity at any given time. All service providers are encouraged to begin the accreditation process as soon as possible and remain focused throughout the project to ensure that accreditation activities are not derailed by other priorities that may arise.

FREE Online Accreditation Readiness Assessment

You are invited to take our National Accreditation Readiness Self-Assessment, which is applicable whether you are working with CARF, COA or The Joint Commission – even if a decision has not yet been made to seek accreditation. The online assessment highlights some of the accrediting bodies’ key focus areas and will help to identify priorities for moving forward with the accreditation process.

Live Training and Webinars

Jennifer Flowers, CEO, has spoken around the country on the topic of accreditation and about FFPSA and the accreditation mandate for QRTPs. These sessions range from a one-hour introductory webinar to 90-minute sessions at conferences to day-long or multi-day intensive, interactive in-person training that serves as an accreditation boot camp for service providers.

Popular topics include:

  • “Catch the Wave: Why Service Providers are Flocking to Accreditation – And Why You Should Join Them”
  • “Family First Prevention Services Act – Understanding the Accreditation Process for QRTPs and Other Service Providers”

Accreditation Preparation Services

Our team of accreditation experts is ready to assist your organization on the road to CARF, COA or The Joint Commission accreditation. All consultants have a minimum of 20 years of experience with national accreditation and working in the child welfare and behavioral health fields. Our solutions are customized to your needs, services, and timelines.

Contact Accreditation Guru today to get started.