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CRC reports improvements in MHCA survey

May 23, 2012
by News release
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CRC Health Group is reporting improved clinical excellence across its network of facilities based on the results of a 36-question customer satisfaction survey conducted by independent third-party organization MHCA (Mental Health Corporations of America).

Five of CRC's facilities ranked in the top 20 across the nation for customer satisfaction last year (2011), based on a specially requested report that sorted responses by unit and focused on OSAT, or overall quality of care and services. CRC's drug and alcohol addiction treatment facility, The Camp Recovery Center IOP (Scotts Valley, Calif.), ranked 5th; the Williamson Treatment Center (Williamson, W. Va.) ranked 7th; eating disorder treatment center Carolina House (Durham, N.C.) ranked 10th; substance abuse treatment facility Azure Acres (Sebastopol, Calif.) ranked 12th; and Wellspring at Structure House, an internationally recognized residential weight loss center in Durham, N.C., ranked 20th and was the top-ranking facility in its behavioral health category.

"We are obviously thrilled with the results of these customer satisfaction surveys, but we are an organization committed to clinical excellence and we will not rest on our laurels," said CRC's CEO Andy Eckert. "The Camp IOP, Williamson Treatment Center, Carolina House, Azure Acres, Wellspring at Structure House, and the rest of CRC's facilities are all doing a tremendous job delivering high quality care to our clients, making vast improvements over the past 12 months, and we will continue to strive to do even better."

According to its website, at the heart of MHCA's purpose and work is a belief that behavioral health care providers must rise to the challenges presented by a transforming healthcare delivery system. In addition to the invaluable surveying overseen by the organization, MHCA is designed to strengthen its members' competitive positions, enhance their leadership capabilities and facilitate strategic networking opportunities.

"We believe that our members are among the best in the industry," said Don Hevey, CEO of MHCA. "MHCA exists for the advancement of our members, enabling them to be key players in the industry, and providing them with an independent third-party customer satisfaction measurement system to encourage excellence."

Hevey added, "CRC has shown a tremendous commitment to quality improvement and to getting objective feedback to make improvements. Putting clients' welfare at the top of priorities is critical for our industry."

"We've had great facility participation and are increasingly engaged with our clients," said Bill Bregar, CRC's Vice President of Quality and facilitator of the company's relationship with MHCA. "Our approach today is extremely client-focused. CRC has realized that one of the key components of improvement and success is listening to our clients, hearing their concerns. We're listening and our improved client satisfaction scores are showing that."

For this reason, each week, Bregar leads a CRC quality meeting for all of its facilities that focuses on client satisfaction to leverage best practices and review root causes and corrective actions in areas of deficiency when needed.

CRC began working with MHCA last summer and every quarter since has seen improvements with every one of the 36 questions on their customer satisfaction survey. Seventy-two of CRC's 123 participating facilities scored at least a 4 on a scale of 1-5 (5 being best) in overall customer satisfaction, with improvements made across the board. CRC's Comprehensive Treatment Centers (CTCs) improved 5% in overall satisfaction, adult recovery facilities improved 2%, and the company's programs for troubled youth improved 3.5%. CRC's weight management and eating disorder facilities saw an impressive average customer satisfaction score of 4.5 out of 5.

"It's extremely important to have an independent, completely objective third-party conducting these surveys so that our intention of continuous improvement is clear," said Bregar. "That's why we're using MHCA."

MHCA measures customer satisfaction among a range of functional areas quarterly through a 36-question survey to member and non-member facility clients. The organization then processes the surveys and supplies its clients with the results.

"We have set the goal to reach at least a 4 on a scale of 5. The vast majority of our programs have reached this threshold. For those that haven't, we systematically address specific areas of weakness -- below 4.0 -- to get at the right solution," Bregar explains.

Once a year, MHCA also does a best practice report. CRC is leveraging this report as a benchmark to leapfrog best practices in the industry.

"It can be a challenge because CRC's network of 100+ facilities as a whole are competing against mom-and-pop shops that only have one facility to manage, so we have a lot more work on our hands," said Bregar. "CRC is by far the largest organization among MHCA clients -- only one other client has more than 55 locations -- but that just means our improved scores are that much more of an achievement for us, that we have succeeded at improving the client experience at such a vast number of facilities."

"At the end of the day, it's all about our clients and their outcomes. We believe this type of intense customer focus is necessary in our industry, and that referents should demand every behavioral health provider publish their patient satisfaction results," Bregar emphasized.

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