“We continuously collect and examine data to inform program design because we believe that it is necessary to keep services and supports relevant and effective.”
Nishi Moonka, M.Ed.
We recognize that people who go into service professions often find quality improvement activities to be a distraction. They argue that time and resources would be better spent in helping people. Our experience has been that when organizations understand the power of using information to manage programs more effectively and help those receiving services, they become committed to data collection and quality improvement efforts.
We believe that non-profit organizations must expand their view of quality assurance and improvement to include more than responding to adverse incidents, ensuring compliance with rules and regulations, and reporting on numbers of services provided. With every public service sector undergoing reform and transformation, non-profit organizations will be asked more and more to demonstrate their effectiveness, or how the services provided actually helped people.
For health and behavioral health agencies, there are specific trends in healthcare reform that suggest quality improvement departments also move their agencies towards accreditation from CARF or the Joint Commission. As people transition from Medi-Cal to private managed care plans, non-profits who have typically worked in the private sector should begin preparing for managed care contracting. Most health plans and healthcare systems require independent accreditation to qualify as a provider. At RDA, our staff have helped non-profits ranging from medium to large size prepare for and receive accreditation.