HCN News & Notes

Baystate Family Advocacy Center Earns Reaccreditation

SPRINGFIELD — Baystate Family Advocacy Center (BFAC) has been awarded re-accreditation by National Children’s Alliance following an extensive application and site-review process.

As part of Baystate Children’s Hospital in Springfield, the Baystate Family Advocacy Center serves as the Hampden County Child Advocacy Center and provides additional service to children, families, and communities of Western Mass. affected by child abuse and exploitation, domestic and community violence, and homicide.

According to Dr. Stephen Boos, co-medical director of the Baystate Family Advocacy Center, trauma and violence are among the most important public-health concerns facing today’s society.

“As serious infections have been prevented by immunization and the safety of cars, homes, and consumer products has steadily improved, it is the actions of people around us that have the greatest impact on our development, behavior, emotions, and physical health from earliest childhood through the ends of our lives,” he said. “Prevention; early, accurate recognition; protection; and effective therapy for trauma and violence require special knowledge, experience, and community relationships that form the heart of the Family Advocacy Center. We are proud to be a local and national leader in such a worthwhile cause.”

As the accrediting agency for Children’s Advocacy Centers (CAC) across the country, National Children’s Alliance awards various levels of accreditation and membership to centers responding to allegations of child abuse in ways that are effective and efficient, and put the needs of child victims of abuse first. Accreditation is the highest level of membership with National Children’s Alliance and denotes excellence in service provision. Accredited CACs must undergo a re-accreditation process every five years to ensure that best practices are continually being applied.

“Baystate Family Advocacy Center is to be commended for its continued commitment to effectively serve victims of child abuse,” said Teresa Huizar, executive director of National Children’s Alliance. “As the national association and accrediting body for Children’s Advocacy Centers across the country, our goal is to ensure that every victim of child abuse has access to high-quality services that result from professional collaboration. By requiring accredited centers to undergo re-accreditation every five years, we ensure that evidence-based practices are being implemented and the highest quality of service is being provided.”

National Children’s Alliance awards accredited membership based on a CAC’s compliance with 10 national standards of accreditation to ensure effective, efficient, and consistent delivery of services to child-abuse victims. Accredited members must utilize a functioning and effective multi-disciplinary team approach to work collaboratively in child-abuse investigation, prosecution, and treatment. National Children’s Alliance also considers standards regarding a center’s cultural competency and diversity, forensic interviews, victim support and advocacy, medical evaluation, therapeutic intervention, and child-focused setting.

Comments are closed.