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Nursing Home Accreditation Standards Are Changing

When individuals are researching potential nursing homes for their ill, injured or aging loved ones, the question of whether or a given nursing home is accredited or not tends to be an important factor in their decision-making. After all, accreditation is meant to reflect that a given facility operates under certain standards and consistently upholds them. Just as students flock to accredited schools and patients flock to accredited hospital facilities, accreditation for nursing homes signifies a certain level of quality.

In particular, loved ones may be concerned that non-accredited facilities may have higher rates of nursing home negligence. Accreditation tends to signify that the facility does not suffer from patterns of neglect or abuse. In addition, it signals that the facility likely delivers consistently adequate patient care and quality of life.

In an effort to preserve the significance of becoming accredited, the Joint Commission that grants accreditations to nursing homes nationwide has recently made its standards for this mark of respect more stringent. In particular, the commission has heightened standards related to patient care and has broadened the ability of nursing homes to receive specialty certifications for certain provided services.

The aim of these changes is to better reflect availability of specialized services for patients who need them and to maintain integrity of the accreditation system. When you are looking for a nursing home for your loved one, it is important to take the issue of accreditation seriously. Facilities who take the time and effort to obtain this certification are often less likely to cause your loved one negligent harm.

Source:, “Joint Commission revamps nursing home accreditation,” Maureen McKinney, Jan. 7, 2013