Council on Accreditation • Copyright 2008
Paid member of an organization. Foster parents are not considered employees and are specifically referenced in relevant standards.
A system of services offered by an organization. For example, an organization providing a mental health service may offer several mental health programs to different populations, e.g., a mental health program for adolescent teens. The word "program" can be used interchangeably with the word "service" or to describe specific programs.
A written statement of principles, values, or intent that provides a basis for consistent decision making and guides the actions of staff, management, and board of trustees. A policy is intentionally broad in its language and application. The following is an example of an anti-discrimination policy:
"[Organization Name] shall not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion (creed), gender, age, national origin (ancestry), disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or military status, in any of its activities or operations. These activities include, but are not limited to, hiring and firing of staff, selection of volunteers, selection of vendors, and provision of services."
In contrast, a procedure is a detailed, step-by-step description of a process. It tells the reader how to do something. Generally, policies are implemented through procedures. For example, the above anti-discrimination policy would require a detailed grievance procedure in order to operationalize it within an organization.
The governing body has the fiduciary responsibility for setting organizational policy. Therefore, policies must be approved and periodically reviewed by the organization's governing body. However, the governing body typically delegates (via policy) the responsibility for policy development to management. In owner-operated for-profit companies, the owner can act as the company's governing body, depending on the company's corporate structure.
In a public agency the responsibility for setting and reviewing policies may belong to the agency's management team, elected officials, another governmental agency, or as is often the case, a combination of the above.
See service recipient.
The body of employees and/or volunteers that carries out the organization's tasks under the organization's administration and/or supervision. This definition does not include foster parents who are specifically referenced in relevant standards
One or more organization-operated programs or activities that have a common general objective and deploy the organization's material and human resources in a planned and systematic manner. An organization that publicly promotes or identifies itself in writing as offering a service, is licensed to deliver a service, assigns personnel and/or space to a service, or allocates financial resources to a service is considered to offer that service.
Established actions or ways of proceeding in the regular performance of organizational duties. Policies and procedures often guide practice.
An ethical and practice principle that requires the protection of information shared within a professional-client relationship. An organization that upholds confidentiality prohibits personnel from disclosing information about persons served without their written consent.
Instruments and procedures used to accomplish a particular goal, activity, or purpose.
Records are maintained in accordance with the EAP’s policy.
A separate and distinct EAP record is maintained for each client that is never part of or stored with any other client related record.
Interpretation: Other client related records may include managed care, personnel, or medical records.
EAP policy defines a “client,” and addresses the following;
EAP policy establishes record-keeping practices based upon the definition of “client” and addresses the following:
EAP policy establishes ownership of client records.