SRU Health Center earns AAAHC accreditation


health care specialist filling out a form

March 30, 2016

AAAHC logo

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Slippery Rock University's McLachlan Student Health Center has earned a three-year accreditation from the Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care.

Accreditation distinguishes the University's health care organization from many other outpatient facilities by providing the highest quality of care to its patients as determined by an independent, external process of evaluation.

Status as an accredited organization means SRU's health center has met nationally recognized standards for the provision of quality health care set by AAAHC. More than 6,000 ambulatory health care organizations across the U.S. are accredited by AAAHC.

Not all ambulatory health care organizations seek accreditation; not all that undergo the rigorous on-site survey process are granted accreditation.

kris benkeser


"Seeking accreditation is a voluntary process," said Kristina Benkeser, director, student health services. "No regulatory agency makes us do it, nor is it tied to the department of health and human services or anything like that. In our case, we choose to do it."

Ambulatory health care organizations seeking accreditation by AAAHC undergo an extensive self-assessment and on-site survey by AAAHC expert surveyors - physicians, nurses and administrators who are actively involved in ambulatory health care. The survey is consultative and educational, presenting best practices to help an organization improve its care and services.

"Receiving this accreditation is like getting the Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval for health care," Benkeser said. "It means that we've met the AAAHC's measures of quality."

Facilities are measured on 581 different standards with each standard receiving one of three possible outcomes: noncompliant, partially compliant or significantly compliant.

With an overall score of 99.3, SRU's health center was noted as being "significantly compliant" in 577 of the 581 standards.

In addition, AAAHC noted that SRU's health center was "substantially compliant" in a number of areas, including:

  • Rights of patients;
  • Governance (general requirements and credentialing and privileging);
  • Administration;
  • Quality of care provided;
  • Quality management and improvement (peer review, quality improvement management and risk management);
  • Clinical records and health information;
  • Infection prevention, control and safety;
  • Facilities and environment;
  • Anesthesia services;
  • Surgical and related services;
  • Pharmaceutical services;
  • Pathology and medical laboratory services;
  • Health education and wellness services;
  • Teaching and publication activities; and
  • Overnight care and services.

"The standards aren't stagnant," said Benkeser. "They are fluid and continually evolving. You have to stay on top of your game in health care. For us to record such a score is almost unheard of.

"It means we've got a staff that from top to bottom is heavily invested in the success of our students and provides the very best care they are able to. Every person that works here is committed to playing an active role in making sure that health issues do not take away from academics."

The Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care, founded in 1979, is the leader in ambulatory health care accreditation and accredits a variety of organizations including: ambulatory surgery centers, office-based surgery centers, endoscopy centers, student health centers, military health care clinics and large medical and dental practices.

AAAHC serves as an advocate for the provision of high-quality health care through the development of nationally recognized standards and through its survey and accreditation programs.

Third-party payers, medical organizations, liability insurance companies, state and federal agencies and the public recognize AAAHC accreditation as a symbol of quality.

MEDIA CONTACT: Robb King | 724.738.2199 |