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TJC, other AOs to change survey focus in wake of pandemic

As regular survey activities slowly resume, expect The Joint Commission (TJC) and other accrediting organizations (AO) to follow CMS in focusing on infection control and taking a detailed look at how well facilities planned for and responded to the coronavirus pandemic.

Be prepared to show how you responded to the rapidly changing guidance provided during the crisis, how you collected and used data to improve your patient care, and what changes you’re making to plan for future emergencies.

And don’t be surprised to see surveyors wearing protective gear and keeping their distance.

Since June, TJC, DNV-GL Healthcare, HFAP, and the Center for Improvement in Healthcare Quality (CIHQ) have been conducting reaccreditation surveys on a case-by-case basis, along with initial accreditation surveys for hospitals opening new facilities.

In March, AOs followed CMS in suspending regular survey activity as the coronavirus pandemic swept the nation—with complaint surveys continuing as needed. At the urging of CMS, AOs also continued performing initial surveys for new healthcare facilities seeking approval to participate in Medicare as a way to increase patient capacity during the COVID-19 national emergency.

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