Drug Rehab Certification and What Else to Look for in a Rehab

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When looking for the appropriate rehab center to help you with your drug or alcohol addiction, there are many factors to consider. Firstly, look for a residential treatment facility that offers treatment for the specific addiction you are struggling with. Then, check out the location of the rehab center/s so that you don’t have to travel too far from home. Next, check with your insurance company to ensure that it covers the rehab/s you’re considering. Finally, check to see if the drug rehab certification is accredited by a third-party organization to ensure you receive the best care.

What is Drug Rehab Certification?

To get a drug rehab certification, the facility must follow specified protocols and guidelines (on top of the standard state license requirements) to receive a stamp of approval from a third-party organization in the addiction and mental health industry. To receive accreditation, the center must undergo lengthy reviews and evaluations of the facility’s staff, safety programs, client care, operations, and policies. The process is lengthy, thorough, and expensive, which is why not every rehab facility seeks accreditation.

Why is Drug Rehab Certification so Important?

An accredited facility is beholden to a third-party organization that monitors their activity. The accreditation body arrives unannounced to scrutinize data and take random surveys of the patients, which ensures that the standards at the facility are being upheld at all times. The accreditation body will also insist on the most up-to-date treatment methods and safest practices throughout. This results in a protective, safe environment for growth and recovery.

Different Awarding Bodies:

Different organizations award accreditations to rehab facilities. The two leading organizations are JCAHO and CARF. Read on for the JCAHO meaning and other accredited-awarding organizations.

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The Joint Commission/JCAHO Certified:

What does JCAHO stand for? JCAHO is an acronym for ‘Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations,’ but the organization is commonly referred to as ‘The Joint Commission.’ The JCAHO is an organization of professionals in the mental health community who evaluate and accredit more than 22,000 healthcare facilities and programs in the US. They accredit all kinds of programs in the health industry, including, but not limited to:

  • Hospitals
  • Pharmacies
  • Assisted living communities
  • Nursing care centers
  • Many other programs

JCAHO Meaning: What does being JCAHO accredited/JCAHO certified actually mean?

A JCAHO-accredited facility must commit to onsite visits (a JCAHO audit) to the facility, additional training for staff, extra safety procedures, and higher standards of client care and therapies. The JCAHO staff evaluate every JCAHO accredited facility or program at a minimum of once every three years to assess that they are upholding their standards.


What does CARF stand for? ‘Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities.’ This accreditation body services more than 60,000 programs all over the US, Canada, and Europe. They aim to accredit health and human services in physical and mental health programs such as:

  1. Behavioral health
  2. Child and youth services
  3. Employment and community services
  4. Opioid treatment programs
  5. Aging services

A CARF audit is a thorough process that is consumer-centered and focuses on the client’s strengths, abilities, needs, and preferences to guide every patient to complete recovery in the safest and most effective way.

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HIPAA stands for ‘Health Insurance Portability and Accountability.’ Their goal is to protect clients' sensitive, private information and recovery details. They provide accreditation for healthcare providers, health plans, business associates, and more.


‘National Association for Behavioral Healthcare’- this awarding body advocate for behavioral healthcare, specifically mental health and substance use disorders) for all citizens of the US. They award accreditation to hospitals, residential treatment facilities, intensive outpatient programs, recovery support services, and more.

What is NAATP?

NAATP is a non-profit organization that supports, and advocates for, addiction treatment providers. All members of NAATP (rehab centers, private therapies, outpatient treatment, residential treatment centers, and more) receive resources and law and policy advocacy and work to collaborate and bring the highest quality care for all people struggling with addiction.

Drug Rehab Certification - What it Means for You

When looking into different rehab center options, remember that attending a facility with a JCAHO accreditation for substance abuse or some other prominent accreditation is recommended. The Avenues Recovery rehab centers are all either accredited by the JCAHO or CARF awarding bodies, making them a superior choice. Find an Avenues Recovery rehab center near you and sign up today to start your mental and physical recovery from addiction.

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