The AAHA has established accreditation standards for central hospitals — hospitals that provide facilities, equipment, and staff for other veterinary practices in the community. The new standards are the latest in AAHA's recently expanded accreditation program, which earlier this year began offering accreditation to specialty and species-specific practices in the categories of avian practice, feline practice, emergency and critical care practice, house call/mobile practice, and practices with an emphasis in surgery or dentistry (see JAVMA, Jan 15, 2000, page 156).
The new accreditation standards are based on the more than 300 requirements AAHA uses to accredit traditional, full-service animal hospitals. The new standards include additional requirements, however, that have been adapted to address the unique relationship between central hospitals and other veterinarians who use their facilities. These requirements are designed to ensure that all veterinarians practicing in the accredited facility adhere to AAHA standards.
Central hospitals are evaluated on a three-year cycle.