ACCREDITATION IN HEALTH
Accreditation in health is a voluntary and periodic process of internal self-
assessment and external review of processes and results that ensure and improve
the quality of care of the client in a healthcare organization, through a series of
optimal and achievable standards to achieve previously known by assessed
institutions. It is carried out by qualified and trained for this purpose, and its result
is endorsed by the entity of accreditation approved for this function (Decree 1011 -
resolution 1445 of 2006).
Accreditation in health is a methodology of external evaluation, established and
recognized for almost 50 years in North America, specifically designed for the
health sector, carried out usually by a non-governmental organization that ensures
the delivery of safe health services and high quality. It is based on requirements of
health care processes, results-oriented and develops by health professionals who
are proven pairs or counterparts of entities that wish to be credited and staff of
public recognition at the national and international level with effects of improvement
of quality. This assessment corresponds to a voluntary process in which publicly
acknowledged a lender healthcare institution, (IPS), entity promoter of services of
health of the contributory regime and subsidized scheme (EPS), entity of prepaid
medicine (EMP) or entity adapted territorial entities of health (ETS), the
implementation of higher standards of quality, subject to compliance with the
minimum requirements determined by the single system of enabling.
Accreditation standards are designed to promote the continuous improvement of
the quality and hence are adjusted every four years. Healthcare organizations that
wish to maintain its accreditation certificate, also must renew it every four years.
The single system of accreditation, as well as encourage management practices,
aims to strengthen the competitiveness of health organizations and provide
information clearly to users, so that they can make decisions based on the results
of accreditation and freely decide if they should be kept or moved to other entities
of the system that also are accredited.
COLOMBIAN LEGAL FRAMEWORK
Law 100 of 1993, articles 186 and 227 provides for the establishment of a system
of guarantee of quality and accreditation in health.
In order to improve the quality in the provision of health services in aspects of
accessibility, opportunity, safety, relevance and continuity, the Ministry of health
regulated the compulsory system of guarantee of quality of health care. The
measure is contained in the Decree on October 15, 2002-2309.
The unique system of accreditation is a component of the quality assurance
system, which is available to the providers of health services, EPS, ARS and
prepaid medical companies who voluntarily wish to demonstrate compliance with
high quality standards, i.e., above the minimum conditions which establishes the
single system of enabling.
The standards to be applied evaluated processes such as respect for the rights of
patients, access to the service, clinical care, and administrative and managerial
support in providing health services and institutions that wish to participate in the
accreditation process. These provisions are regulated in resolution 1474 and its
The Ministry of Social protection, through resolution 003557 of 19 November 2003,
won the contest of merits MPS-03-2003 that designates to the Colombian Institute
of technical standards and certification,ICONTEC, as accrediting entity for the
single system of accreditation (SUA).