Our Commitment to Excellence
Every four years Samaritan undergoes a comprehensive accreditation process that begins by gathering and organizing dozens of documents and creating and updating dozens more, and that's only the tip of the iceberg. Although the process requires contributions from the board and entire executive team, the bulk of the coordination efforts falls on the shoulders of Luci Ramsey, our director of operations and finance. (That's why we posted a picture of Luci in action!)
So, why do we engage in this labor-intensive effort that doesn't stop after all the paperwork has been submitted, but continues for another week when the accreditor arrives to inspect, check, interview, and observe? (And it doesn't end there, either. In fact, that's when it's really just getting started.) Our accrediting organization, the Solihten Institute in Denver, CO, describes the importance of the process:
Accreditation helps us "maintain sound organizational structures, efficient management and administration, high-quality clinical processes, appropriate personnel and financial practices, and professional accountability through standards that are recognized nationally by managed care companies, denominations, and colleagues in the field."
Our accreditation will be performed this year by Doug Stephens, a licensed counselor and vice president of the Solihten Institute. Our leadership team has met and consulted with Doug in the past, benefitting from his knowledge and experience as a counselor and an administrator.
Luci Ramsey, our director of operations and finance, coordinates information for our national accrediting organization, the Solihten Institute
After Doug flies in and gets settled, he’ll be situated at our Sewickley headquarters, poring over the content of numerous files and organizational data. He will also pose questions to staff members, attend a board meeting, observe our case conference, and perform other necessary duties.
Doug will then share his findings with us and submit his report to the Solihten Institute Accreditation Coordinator. We, in turn, will prepare a written response to Doug’s report and send that off, as well. The Solihten Institute folks will review the materials and pass them along to their board of directors for approval. In the meantime, we will have learned about changes or improvements that need to occur. Once full accreditation has been granted, it will remain in effect for four more years.
What this Ultimately Means
Whether you’re a former or prospective client, a donor, a therapist, or other stakeholder you can rest assured that Samaritan is committed to offering excellent, affordable services, maintaining fiscal health, and preserving our status as a leading, faith-based counseling center in Western Pennsylvania. Likewise, we are continually improving, expanding, and evolving to meet the mental, emotional, and spiritual health needs of Pennsylvanians. If you are a PA resident, you can receive virtual counseling with us. We welcome your inquiries; don’t hesitate to call us at 412.741.7430.