It takes around 6 to 9 months from the time a service
registers with the HTAS programme to point of
The three phases of accreditation
During this phase, the service undertakes a
series of activities, including distributing staff, team manager,
carer and service user questionnaires and completing a
review of health records and an organisational checklist.
These enable the multi-disciplinary team to
review their local procedures and practices against the standards
and, if necessary, to make the changes required to achieve
accreditation. The self review period is three months.
A summary report of the results from the self
review forms the basis of the discussions at the peer review
Peer review visit by an external
The peer review visit takes places 4 to 8 weeks after completion
of the self review.
A team, generally of four people, comprising 2 professional or
clinical reviewers from other HTAS member services, a service
user and/or carer representative, and usually a member of
the HTAS Project Team undertakes a peer review
In addition to validating the self review data, the peer
review provides an opportunity for discussion, sharing of ideas and
for the visiting team to offer advice and support.
Information from the self and peer review is compiled into a
summary report which is verified by the peer review team and host
team before being submitted to the Accreditation Committee
The AC includes nominated representatives from stakeholder
professional bodies and service user and carer
The Committee makes a recommendation about the service’s
accreditation to the Royal College of Psychiatrists’ Special
Committee for Professional Ethics, as the awarding body.
There are four categories of
accreditation status, depending on the percentages of
- Accredited as excellent
- Accreditation deferred
- Not accredited
Services that cannot achieve accreditation at
the point of peer review are deferred for a time limited period in
which they must meet the necessary standards.
Accreditation is valid for up to three
years, subject to satisfactory completion of an interim review at