Stricter rules for accrediting bodies met with industry debate

Healthcare organizations are split on whether the White House should impose stricter regulations on healthcare accreditation bodies to limit conflicts of interest, reports The Wall Street Journal.

The Trump administration is debating whether to continue approving accreditation groups that also operate consulting arms, which charge hospitals for their help to gain accreditation.

CMS has also proposed rule changes that would prevent such financial arrangements in the accreditation market. The agency has received 120 public comments on the proposal over the last few months.

The Joint Commission told CMS it uses a firewall between its accreditation services and a consulting subsidiary. "A firewall has been in place since 1987 and has been enhanced over the years to remain up to date with the structure and operations of the organizations," the accrediting body wrote in its comment to CMS.

Other accrediting organizations, like the nonprofit URAC, are encouraging CMS to address financial arrangements between accreditors and healthcare facilities.

"We believe these may also constitute a conflict of interest, as it may provide some with undue influence over the accreditation process," former URAC President and CEO Kylanne Green wrote in a comment letter to CMS.

To view WSJ's full report, click here.

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