SOMC Renews CARF, Gains Stroke Specialty Accreditation

The Inpatient Rehab Unit at Southern Ohio Medical Center recently received its sixth consecutive accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF).

The department was also granted Stroke Specialty accreditation by CARF reviewers. “We’re very pleased to maintain this recognition, and to gain that of a Stroke Specialty Program,” Regina Keller, nurse manager of the SOMC Rehab Care Unit, said. “Earning these designations shows that our employees are truly passionate about what they do and have a vested interest in providing our patients and their families with the care needed to recover and improve after stroke.”

CARF is an independent, nonprofit accreditor, created to develop and maintain standards that strengthen the value and awareness of rehabilitation services. To become accredited, an organization must satisfy specific CARF conditions and demonstrate established standards through an in-depth site survey every three years.

“Many processes are reviewed throughout our unit during the survey, including the scope of services provided, the interdisciplinary teams created for performance improvement and our safety measures and principles,” Belinda Carter, program director of the SOMC Rehab Care Unit, said. “It’s a very tedious process and to learn that our department is able to meet the CARF requirements year after year, as well as gain stroke specialty accreditation, shows how high our dedication to excellence truly is.” Stroke Specialty Program standards are developed around critical key concepts of rehabilitation including health, prevention, partnering, life roles and supported self-management.

A major emphasis also is placed on recognizing, assessing, treating and preventing conditions related to stroke and its complications. Carter explained that the unit has worked to achieve these standards for the past three years, under-going additional training and education to improve their stroke patients’ treatment and outcomes, providing support both during and after rehab through the Moving Forward After Stroke program and monthly support group, and providing educational opportunities to the community whenever possible.

“Gaining stroke specialty accreditation only further supports our efforts to help our patients, their families and our community members gain and maintain a high quality of life,” she added. “We are very proud to be the only hospital in our region to achieve this designation and we hope our patients feel more confident in knowing that are receiving the best rehab care available.”