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2018: CARF’s Year in Review

By CARF International

CARF surveyors traveled more than 22,345,254 miles in 2018. Twenty-two million. That’s 46 round trips to the moon.

Those myriad miles, gathered by the fourteen hundred industry professionals who make up the CARF surveyor cadre, symbolize the breadth of activity that occurred in 2018 for the fields in which CARF offers accreditation.

They represent opportunities, trends, collaborations, and new conversations.

They represent providers, payers, regulators, and others who work to advance quality practices.

They represent progress in innovation, service delivery, and business practices.

As 2018 comes to a close, we thank the many stakeholders who spent another year advancing these goals. In a brief look back, here are some of the most consequential stories from 2018:

January 1

Richard Forkosh begins second stint as CARF’s Board Chair

Richard ForkoshOn January 1, Richard Forkosh, the retired President and CEO of United Cerebral Palsy Heartland, began his second, nonconsecutive term as CARF’s Board Chair. (His first term spanned 2006 and 2007).

Forkosh was first elected to what was then the CARF Board of Trustees in 1999. In his 20th consecutive year serving in governance for CARF, he exemplifies the consistency and stability of CARF’s Board of Directors.

Learn more:

(Pictured: Richard Forkosh, CARF’s Board Chair)

February 9

FFPSA shakes up the US child-welfare sector

Leslie Ellis-Lang presenting at the Texas Child Care Administrators ConferenceThe US Congress passed the Family First Prevention Services Act (FFPSA) on February 9. The seminal new law says that after the first two weeks of child placement, only “specified settings” outside of foster-family homes are eligible for reimbursement through Title IV-E foster care funds. The term “specified settings” includes the creation of a new category of residential intervention called a Qualified Residential Treatment Program (QRTP).

As an approved accrediting body for QRTPs, CARF spent much of 2018 helping spread information about FFPSA at educational events and conferences across the country.

Learn more:

(Pictured: Leslie Ellis-Lang, CARF’s managing director of child and youth services, presenting at the Texas Child Care Administrators Conference)

June 3–9

Suicide prevention thrust into public eye

National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention logoIn  the span of one week this summer, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released a report titled Suicide rising across the US, and celebrities Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain lost their lives to suicide. In the days that followed, there was increased public discussion acknowledging suicide as an ongoing public health crisis.

It is important that this discussion continue. The deaths of Spade and Bourdain made news, but they represent thousands more who are at risk. Many of these individuals stay hidden or do not receive support because of misconception, stigma, or lack of resources. CARF encourages everyone, especially those who work in health and human services, to learn about warning signs and available resources for people at risk for suicide.

Learn more:

(Pictured: National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention logo. A CARF representative sits on the Board of Directors for the Action Alliance)

October 3

Medicare coverage expands to include opioid treatment programs

US Capitol buildingMedicare historically has not covered opioid addiction treatment. But early this fall, Congress passed the SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act, which was signed into law a few weeks later. The new law, in part, expanded Medicare coverage to include opioid use disorder (OUD) programs.

The changes should give OUD programs more opportunities to provide care across the lifespan. As opioid-related hospitalizations increased by 34 percent from 2010 to 2015 in individuals over 65, the chance of more access for this population could be a reason for optimism.

Learn more:

(Pictured: US Capitol building)

October 24

Jed Johnson becomes managing director of aging services

Jed JohnsonIn  late October, longtime CARF advocate Jed Johnson succeeded Sue Matthiesen as CARF’s managing director of aging services (Matthiesen led the aging services team for 12 years).

Johnson has been deeply involved with CARF since the late 1990s when, as a member of the board of directors for the National Adult Day Services Association, he helped create CARF’s first Adult Day Services standards. He then served two decades as a CARF surveyor and represented Easterseals on CARF’s International Advisory Council and former Board of Trustees.

Learn more:

(Pictured: Jed Johnson, CARF’s managing director of aging services)

November 8–10

Transforming Outcomes Institute in China for the first time

Chris MacDonell is greeted in ChinaCARF staff and associates conducted the first Transforming Outcomes Institute outside of North America on November 8–10. Approximately 100 participants representing 34 organizations across China attended the event hosted at Guangdong Work Injury Rehabilitation Hospital.

The need for strong performance management practices continues to increase worldwide. In China, providers are working to meet new expectations as part of the government’s Healthy China 2030 (HC 2030). In the US, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has begun shifting to value-based payment models. Performance management will play a large role in all areas of health and human services moving forward, and many providers are taking great steps to get prepared.

Learn more:

(Pictured: Chris MacDonell, CARF’s managing director of medical rehabilitation and international aging services/medical rehabilitation, is greeted by a representative from the host hospital)

(Aging Services,Behavioral Health,Employment and Community Services,Child and Youth Services,Medical Rehabilitation)

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