To be accredited means that your organization holds to a set of standards of practice within its own industry. Those standards have to be visible in the daily provision of services in the form of documented process and protocols.
The Washington State legislation that was apparently passed recently provides immunity from liability to abortion providers as well as sets up Planned Parenthood as an accreditation agency. This is a potentially disturbing issue. Making an organization with a subjective, financially vested interest in the abortion business an accreditation agency is the classical ethical conflict of interest. First, it is assumed that the organization has documented standards of care for helping women through the decision-making process knowing full well that if they decide to do anything other than have an abortion the organization looses money and hurts their PR campaign. Second, assuming they have documented standards of care the question becomes whether or not they in line with proper medical and counseling standards. Third, can they actually prove that they uphold their standards on a case by case, patient by patient basis? Fourth, what happens when they are asked to be the accreditation agency for women’s health organizations with differing philosophies of service, say pregnancy centers for instance?
This is a perfect example of how at risk the pregnancy center movement is. If the pregnancy center movement cannot demonstrate that it regulates itself according to current professional codes of ethics in the fields of medicine and counseling/psychology the government will be tempted to create regulation for it. If the movement lets this Washington State legislation pass without identifying and holding to our own documented standards that are in line with current medical and counseling ethics the pregnancy center movement may very well be regulated right out of existence. The best way to meet this challenge is with a comprehensive linear service model.
Click CompassCare Ethical Standards for Organizations Helping Women 6-8-10 for CompassCare’s Standards for Organization’s Helping Women. To know that these standards are being observed in your organization a linear service process is necessary. For more information on a complete linear service model go to CompassCare’s Training website.