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Winter is here! Are you aware that The Joint Commission has recently revised its accreditation eligibility criteria for opioid treatment programs (OTPs)? This update holds significant importance for both Hospitals and Behavioral Health Care organizations with OTP programs.

Accreditation Eligibility Criteria for Opioid Treatment Programs

The landscape of healthcare is ever evolving, and staying up to date with the latest changes and requirements is crucial for organizations seeking accreditation. In line with its commitment to excellence, The Joint Commission has recently approved revised eligibility requirements for initial surveys for organizations aiming to become accredited opioid treatment programs (OTPs) under the Behavioral Health Care and Human Services Accreditation Program. These changes align better with the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA) expectations, making the accreditation process smoother and more comprehensive.

Breakdown of Key Record Review Revisions

The average daily census now drives a standardized number of client records reviewed. For organizations with an average daily census of 21 or greater, they must now provide client records for a minimum of 10% of their ADC. However, organizations in this category must provide records for no fewer than 30 clients. This ensures a robust and representative sample of client cases, facilitating thorough evaluation.

Organizations with an ADC of fewer than 21 clients (1-20) are required to furnish records for a minimum of 20 individuals. This ensures that even smaller OTPs are subject to a comprehensive review of a significant number of records for evaluation purposes.

Active Clients at the Time of Survey

An OTP must have a minimum of 2 active clients at the time of their survey. This requirement underscores the importance of client care and engagement.  


Look for the publication of these revisions online in the winter interim 2024 E-dition® update to the Comprehensive Accreditation Manual for Behavioral Health Care and Human Services (CAMBHC) in “The Accreditation Process” (ACC) chapter. Furthermore, organizations that purchase the spring 2024 hard-copy update service of this manual will automatically receive these revisions.

Remain Up to Date

Staying informed and complying with these revised eligibility requirements is vital for OTPs aspiring to achieve accreditation. For additional details and information regarding these revisions, it is recommended to contact your account executive. Additionally, you can refer to the ACC chapter on E-dition or in the CAMBHC for comprehensive guidance.

In conclusion, these revised eligibility requirements for opioid treatment programs reflect a commitment to ensuring high standards in client care and safety. By aligning with SAMHSA’s expectations, The Joint Commission is working to streamline the accreditation process and empower organizations to deliver quality services to those battling opioid addiction.

Barrins & Associates Consultation

At Barrins & Associates we assist you to achieve initial and ongoing OTP accreditation and regulatory compliance.  Inquire today about our Mock Survey and Continuous Readiness Consultations.  We continue to support your journey toward accreditation and regulatory compliance.