McLaughlin Advisors sat down with Sara Gershfeld Litvak, chief executive officer and Dr. Ellie Kazemi, chief science officer, to discuss the importance of standards and accreditation, some challenging shortfalls within the industry, the role of private equity, and their take on BHCOE’s critics.
When asked about the difference between Standards and Standardization, Litvak was quick to distinguish the two: “I think they’re often used pretty interchangeably, but standards provide you with a framework to push forward, whereas standardization means everything is done the same. At BHCOE, we look at function, not form. We won’t tell you how to make your employees happy, we just measure whether they are or not. Standardization would say, ‘This is the manner in which your employees need to maintain satisfaction,’ but standards just say, ‘This is the benchmark we’ll compare you against, and we won’t dictate how you get there.’”
Both Litvak and Dr. Kazemi remarked on accreditation’s ability to complement licensure while providing some distinction between the two. Dr. Kazemi shared the following.
“We know the environment wins at the end of the day. This is what I tell my students: ‘I can train you to meet the top competencies, but if you are placed in an organization that makes it difficult for you to survive without engaging in unethical or illegal misconduct, then it’s likely that the environment will win.’ I think that’s why accreditation offers even more protection, because it makes sure the environment is set so the clinicians can do their jobs at their best.”
Sara echoed thoughts on the need for accreditation alongside the industry’s licensing body, while sharing her perspective on the two.
“Licensure and accreditation are getting at the same thing, but I look at them quite differently because licensure regulates the individual, whereas accreditation regulates the organization or the entity that employs those individuals. I would say that if you’re pro-licensure, you have to be pro-accreditation. If you’re out there saying that licensure is critically important to protect consumers, the next logical step is that accreditation, too, must protect consumers.”