Why it’s important to choose an accredited surgical facility

Before you have any type of surgery, you’ll want to make sure that your procedure will be performed in an accredited facility. This could be a hospital, an outpatient surgical facility, or a private surgery suite that is adjacent to your surgeon’s clinic offices. However, the location of the operating room is not nearly as important as what you find inside of it. By choosing an accredited surgical facility, you can help ensure the following for your procedure:

  • Qualified, trained and experienced support staff
  • A fully qualified anesthesiologist or anesthetist
  • A clean, fully equipped operating room
  • Adequate personnel and equipment to respond to emergency situations

For a facility to receive accreditation, it must adhere to strict standards for staff, sanitation, equipment, and patient care set forth by an official accrediting body. A surgeon and his staff must submit to regular inspections and provide thorough records of their policies and procedures to retain accreditation.

All ABCS Surgeons perform surgical procedures in accredited facilites

In fact, we believe that facility accreditation is so important that we require ABCS surgeons to be affiliated with an accredited facility in order to complete the ABCS application, become board certified, and maintain board certification with the ABCS. Each surgeon must provide proof of the following:

  • Operating privileges in good standing in an accredited hospital or outpatient facility
  • Operating facilities are accredited by an organization approved by the state medical board
  • Privileges and affiliations are with facilities in the same location where he or she practices surgery

Who grants accreditation to a surgical facility?

Below we’ve outlined the major national accrediting bodies in the U.S. that you will likely come across as you research board certified cosmetic surgeons in your area. All independently verify that a surgical facility is safe, surgery is performed by qualified medical professionals, and that the facility is equipped to handle emergency situations. Keep in mind that this is a partial list; there are several highly reputable accrediting bodies that operate on a state or regional level that require similar standards for accreditation (as a rule of thumb, an accrediting body that is approved by the state medical board where a surgeon operates can be considered acceptable):

Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care (AAAHC)

Formed in 1979, AAAHC is a private organization that oversees patient care and safety standards at ambulatory surgical centers, community health centers, medical group practices, military health care facilities, and more. Currently, approximately 5000 facilities nationwide are AAAHC accredited. Learn more about AAAHC accreditation»

The Joint Commission (TJC)

The Joint Commission is one of the nation’s largest accrediting bodies, overseeing standards of care at hospitals, nursing care centers, and other medical facilities in addition to ambulatory surgical centers and office-based surgical suites. There are a unique set of requirements for each type of facility. As an independent, not-for-profit organization, TJC accredits and certifies more than 25,000 facilities and programs nationwide. Learn more about TJC accreditation»

American Association for Accreditation of Ambulatory Surgical Facilities (AAAASF)

Established in 1980, AAAASF specializes in accreditation of ambulatory surgical facilities, or those that take place in an office-based surgery (OBS) setting. An example of an ambulatory surgical facility would be a surgical suite that is located on-site of your cosmetic surgeon’s office. Currently, about 2000 facilities nationwide are AAAASF accredited.
Learn more about AAAASF accreditation»

Surgical Review Corporation (SRC)

Established in 2003, the Surgical Review Corporation (SRC) is a nonprofit, patient safety organization that develops and administers best-in-class accreditation programs for surgical facilities and medical professionals. These accreditation programs improve the safety and quality of patient care and lower the overall costs associated with successful treatment.
Learn more about SRC accreditation»

Healthcare Facilities Accreditation Program (HFAP) / Accreditation Commission for Health Care (ACHC)

Developed in 1945, HFAP was the first healthcare accreditation program in the United States, and was run under the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). HFAP celebrated its 75th anniversary in 2020, by building on a legacy of education-based programs that promote safe, high quality patient care across a range of settings through a historic merger. On October 19, 2020, Accreditation Commission for Health Care (ACHC) and AAHHS, HFAP’s parent company, became the first two accrediting organizations with deeming authority from CMS to merge.

HFAP is now ACHC, an internationally recognized accrediting body that remains committed to providers, customer service, and quality patient care. Learn more about ACHC accreditation»


Medicare also grants facility accreditation to hospitals, ambulatory surgical centers, and physician’s offices throughout the nation. Typically, facilities that are accredited by Medicare also hold accreditation by one of the above private accrediting organizations.

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