Community mental health awarded CARF accreditation

CARF (formerly known as Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities) announced North Country Community Mental Health Authority has been accredited for a period of three years (through 2021) for eight programs.

This is the fifth three-year accreditation that the international accrediting commission has awarded to North Country Community Mental Health. The first survey was in 2007.

“North Country staff do high quality, difficult work every day and it is rewarding to have their efforts validated in this way,” said Christine Gebhard, North Country CEO. “This accomplishment reflects our focus on clients, our consistency in operations as one organization serving six counties, our relationships with our valued community partners, and our strong staff foundation.”

This accreditation outcome represents the highest level of accreditation that can be awarded to an organization and shows the organization’s substantial conformance to the standards established by CARF.

An organization receiving a Three-Year Accreditation has put itself through a rigorous peer review process. It has demonstrated to a team of surveyors during an on-site visit its commitment to offering programs and services that are measurable, accountable, and of the highest quality.

North Country Community Mental Health provides services to residents of Antrim, Charlevoix, Cheboygan, Emmet, Kalkaska and Otsego Counties experiencing a serious mental illness, severe emotional problem, or intellectual/developmental disability, including individuals with co-occurring substance use disorder.

Gebhard indicated the accrediting body was on site for several days in October and did a comprehensive review of service programs, policies and procedures, and operations, including conducting interviews with staff, board members, community partners and persons served by North Country.

According to the formal CARF report, this accreditation is a confirmation of the organization’s vision, mission, business ethics, values, and operations to providing quality services and to quality improvement. “The organization’s staff members are engaging, proactive, and committed to providing quality services to clients.”

In addition to its “committed, respectful and caring staff,” several strengths were noted, including the almost perfect score the Recipient Rights Office received in its recent state audit, the innovative and cost effective Emergency Services Program and its use of teleconferencing technology, its rapid upgrade and expansion of the use of technology throughout the organization, its excellent community partnerships and extremely positive image and reputation in the community.

The organization’s development and implementation of the LEAN Process Improvement System for human services delivery was cited as exemplary and having an impressive impact on the efficiency and effectiveness of services.

Persons wishing to know more about North Country Community Mental Health are encouraged to visit or to access services call 877-470-7130.

CARF is an independent, not-for-profit accrediting body whose mission is to promote the quality, value, and optimal outcomes of services through a consultative accreditation process that centers on enhancing the lives of the persons served. Founded in 1966 as the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities, and now known as CARF International, the accrediting body establishes consumer-focused standards to help organizations measure and improve the quality of their programs and services.  For more information visit

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