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Consumer Fact Sheet: What is accreditation?

Accreditation is an evaluation process that involves assessment by qualified external peer reviewers to assess a health service organisation’s compliance with safety and quality standards. There is also a focus on continuous quality improvement strategies that promote safe and high quality healthcare. Awarding accreditation to a health service organisation provides assurance to the community that the organisation meets expected patient safety and quality standards.

In Australia, all public and private hospitals, day procedure services and most public dental practices must be accredited.

To become accredited, health service organisations must pass external assessments to show they have implemented all of the requirements of the NSQHS Standards. The assessments are conducted by independent accrediting agencies, approved by the Commission, as part of the Australian Health Service Safety and Quality Accreditation (AHSSQA) Scheme. The Commission coordinates national accreditation processes via the AHHSQA Scheme.


If you are concerned about a safety or quality issue at a health service organisation, you can:

Share your feedback with a clinician or other staff member of the health service organisation in person

  • Write your feedback down on a feedback form
  • Contact the health service organisation’s consumer advocate or patient liaison officer to help you resolve any concerns
  • Contact your state and territory’s health complaints authority if you do not receive a response, or if you are not happy with the response you receive. These are listed below:

ACT Human Rights Commission

Web: www.hrc.act.gov.au/complaints 

Phone: 02 6205 2222

NSW Health Care Complaints Commission

Web: www.hccc.nsw.gov.au

Phone: 1800 043 159

NT Health and Community Services Complaints Commission

Web: www.hcscc.nt.gov.au

Phone: 1800 004 474

QLD Office of the Health Ombudsman

Web: www.oho.qld.gov.au

Phone: 133 646

SA Health and Community Services Complaints Commissioner

Web: www.hcscc.sa.gov.au

Phone: 1800 232 007

TAS Health Complaints Commissioner

Web: www.healthcomplaints.tas.gov.au

Phone: 1800 001 170

VIC Health Complaints Commissioner

Web: www.hcc.vic.gov.au

Phone: 1300 582 113

WA Health and Disability Services Complaints Office

Web: www.hadsco.wa.gov.au

Phone: 1800 813 583

Last updated 31st May, 2018 at 08:21pm