Health Center receives accreditation

The Brown-Lupton Health Center has become the eighth center in Texas accredited by the Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care.

The Health Center met standards set for patient treatment, record keeping, on-going quality improvement projects, equipment checking, hiring process and other factors, Health Center Medical Director Jane Torgerson said.

Kelle Tillman, Health Center clinical nursing director, said the Health Center staff pride themselves on their work.

“We meet a higher standard of quality of health care that we deliver here and maintain at the Health Center,” Tillman said.

The Health Center created policies, ensured the employees’ knowledge of the policies and had proof of implementation.

Previously, they practiced many of the standards set by the AAAHC but needed to prepare the paperwork and policy writing, Torgerson said.

Stacey Simpson, Health Center health services administrator, said the new process was a learning experience.

“We knew how we did things, but it’s harder to do the [policy writing] format,” Simpson said.

The Health Center included a patient rights document in intake paperwork, insuring that patients will see it every time they visit, Torgerson said.

She said surveyors visited the Health Center for almost two days in August.

The surveyors would check random charts to guarantee all charts were handled the same, Torgerson said. They also asked Health Center employees to see or explain certain policies on the spot.

Baylor University, SMU, Texas A&M Univerisity and University of Texas are also accredited by the AAAHC.

Sohomore sociology major Zoey Murzyn said she hoped the recent accreditation would help develop the Health Center’s services.

She said the Health Center should focus on family history, patient history and improved confidentiality.

Murzyn said she has had varied experiences with the Health Center. She said her mother would trust the Health Center more after the accreditation.

The Health Center has board-certified family practice providers, emergency physicians and physician assistants, according to the center’s website.

According to the site, there is a women’s health nurse practitioner,but Murzyn said she wished there was also an OB-GYN available.

Murzyn said if procedures improved, more students would visit the Health Center.

The Health Center started the online application process in January 2008. The accreditation lasts for three years, the longest period possible, according to the AAAHC website.

The staff was ecstatic after receiving the official letter of accreditation in the mail on Sept. 14, Tillman said.

For more information about the accreditation process, go to AAAHC’s website.