Moving Toward Quality Assurance

Whether we have been in college health for 2 months or 20 years, it is important to continually strive for quality health care delivery, and to assess how we measure up to certain standards. Self study, using ACHA's Recommended Standards for a College Health Program, can become the basis for eventually applying for and achieving accreditation of our health services, through either the AAAHC or the JCAH.

Some CQ readers from medium sized or larger colleges have achieved accreditation of their health services, and others are currently in the process. Although some of our readers from small nurse-directed health services have not and may not be considering accreditation, I hope that all will enjoy the voluntary exercise of putting ourselves through the paces as a form of "professional calisthetics."

Whether or not we are preparing for the "olympics" of accreditation, moving toward quality assurance is an important and ongoing process. If for no other reason than to provide ourselves with the personal and professional satisfaction of knowing how we can and do measure up to quality standards, the pursuit of quality assurance is indeed a worthwhile goal.

Using ACHA's Recommended Standards for a College Health Program as a basis, in the coming issues of CQ we will consider some of those standards. We will have the opportunity to consider examples from other health services and make adjustments and improvements in our own programs and policies to improve our compliance with quality assurance standards.

ACHA's Generic Standard, No.13: GOVERNANCE/INSTITUTIONAL RESPONSIBILITY FOR HEALTH SERVICES,Part B states, "Governing body responsibilities include but are not limited to: 1. Determining the mission, goals and objectives of the college health service."

In this issue of CQ, you have the opportunity to read the Mission Statements from Eleven College Health Services. Perhaps this will inspire some of us to improve our own mission statement. Through a process of collaboration, we can move toward quality assurance.

It is my hope that CQ readers will share their wisdom and expertise as I attempt to gather information to formulate the articles for each issue ofCQ (Connections Quarterly). The quality assurance theme should generate enough information for several articles in the coming issues.

To order your copy of ACHA's Recommended Standards for a College Health Program, contact ACHA, by phone (410)859-1500 or FAX (410)859-1510, or email:

Return to the list of articles in the Fall 1996 Issue of CQ.

Please email your input and comments to Carol Mulvihill at