December 28 2010The SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC) S’áxt’ Hít Mt. Edgecumbe Hospital in Sitka recently earned The Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval for accreditation by demonstrating compliance with The Joint Commission’s national standards for health care quality and safety in hospitals. The accreditation award, which is a renewal good for three years, recognizes Mt. Edgecumbe Hospital’s dedication to continuous compliance with The Joint Commission’s state-of-the-art standards. Mt. Edgecumbe Hospital underwent a rigorous unannounced on-site survey in September 2010, with a follow-up survey in November. A team of Joint Commission expert surveyors evaluated the hospital for compliance with standards of care specific to the needs of patients, including infection prevention and control, leadership and medication management. To learn more about Mt. Edgecumbe Hospital’s accreditation renewal from The Joint Commission, go to http://www.qualitycheck.org/qualityreport.aspx?hcoid=10217. The accreditation renewal includes Mt. Edgecumbe Hospital and the Haa Toowóo Náakw Hít Outpatient Behavioral Health Clinic, which is located on the hospital’s Sitka campus. The SEARHC S’áxt’ Hít Mt. Edgecumbe Hospital and Ethel Lund Medical Center in Juneau have been accredited by The Joint Commission since 1987. “In achieving Joint Commission accreditation, the SEARHC S’áxt’ Hít Mt. Edgecumbe Hospital has demonstrated its commitment to the highest standards of care for its patients,” said Mark Pelletier, RN, MS, executive director of The Joint Commission’s Hospital Programs, Accreditation and Certification Services. “Accreditation is a voluntary process and I commend Mt. Edgecumbe Hospital for successfully undertaking this challenge to elevate its standard of care and instill confidence in the community it serves.” “With Joint Commission accreditation, we are making a significant investment in quality on a day-to-day basis from the top down,” said Norma J. Perkins, SEARHC S’áxt’ Hít Mt. Edgecumbe Hospital Administrator. “Joint Commission accreditation provides us a framework to take our organization to the next level and helps create a culture of excellence. Achieving Joint Commission accreditation, for our organization, is a major step toward maintaining excellence and continually improving the care we provide.” The Joint Commission’s ambulatory care standards address important functions relating to the care of patients and the management of an ambulatory care (outpatient care) organization. The standards are developed in consultation with health care experts, providers, measurement experts and patients. Founded in 1951, The Joint Commission seeks 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. The Joint Commission evaluates and accredits more than 18,000 health care organizations and programs in the United States. The Joint Commission also providers certification of more than 1,700 disease-specific care programs, primary stroke centers and health care staffing services. An independent, not-for-profit organization, The Joint Commission is the nation’s oldest and largest standards-setting and accrediting body in health care.