Office for People With Developmental Disabilities

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Criteria and Best Practices

03/06/12

The five criteria for being recognized as a Compass agency are:

  1. The agency must demonstrate that there is a documented commitment from its board of directors and management to embrace the Compass initiative objectives.

    Examples of existing best practices of current Compass agencies include:

    • People receiving services are full voting members of the board
    • People receiving services participate in activities such as the self-survey process, interviewing/hiring process, and staff training process
    • Status report regarding Compass program activities is a standing agenda item at all board meetings
    • Annual Compass report presented at board meeting
    • Board reviews Compass semi-annual reports prior to issuance
    • Board participation on agency standing committees (e.g., incident review)
    • Board members conduct planned unannounced visits to program sites when people receiving services are present
    • Board participation in annual strategic planning process
    • The mission statement is read at the beginning of each board meeting
    • The mission statement is posted prominently at all program sites
    • The mission statement is reviewed periodically by the board with input from people receiving services, staff, and management
    • The mission statement is represented in pictorial form to assist people receiving services in understanding the mission of the agency
    • The mission statement is incorporated into the ISP process. People receiving services develop personal mission statements
  2. There is a management plan which is an organizational strategic plan that emerges from the mission statement.

    Examples of existing best practices of current Compass agencies include:

    • People receiving services have direct input on development of the management plan
    • Family members/advocates have direct input on development of the management plan
    • In addition to the agency-wide components of the management plan, each program site develops its own site-specific annual goals
    • Formal process established for quarterly review of management plan
    • Agency conducts annual strategic planning retreat
  3. There exists a regulatory self-survey process.

    Examples of existing best practices of current Compass agencies include:

    • Each program has identified staff responsible for participating in the annual self-survey in addition to agency QA staff
    • Self-surveys include a quality of life assessment
    • Self-survey QA teams include people receiving services who participate in physical plant inspections and interviews
    • Maintenance department staff participate in physical plant inspections with QA staff
    • Plans of correction are validated through follow-up QA visits
    • Results of self-survey visits are analyzed for agency-wide trends
    • Quarterly reports on QA activities and outcomes are completed, reviewed by senior management, and submitted to the board
  4. There is a process to review the achievement of the valued outcomes for people served by the agency.

    Examples of existing best practices of current Compass agencies include:

    • Annual completion of an opinion questionnaire/satisfaction survey by each person receiving services. The results are tabulated, analyzed, and used to enhance the agency’s operations
    • Satisfaction surveys are sent annually to families, correspondents, advocates, and staff
    • All satisfaction surveys are analyzed annually and trended agency-wide
    • Internal QA staff complete a valued outcome measurement tool during each self-survey visit
    • People receiving services receive regular training on rights, responsibilities, input process, grievances/appeals
    • Site-specific meetings and other empowerment activities result in meaningful changes for people receiving services lives, and in agency policies/procedures
    • People receiving services are trained to run their own site-specific meetings
    • An agency-wide review panel reviews all site-specific meeting minutes
    • There is an annual review of valued outcomes and responses for each person receiving services
    • Agency outcomes are measured through program specific program evaluation goals developed by each program
    • Families/guardians/correspondents/advocates support group provides a forum for training, communication, and advocacy
  5. An agency wide quality management process exists and is documented.

    Examples of existing best practices of current Compass agencies include:

    • Councils/committees with persons receiving services in each of the programs, as well as agency-wide committees, make recommendations for improvement, which are considered by agency management
    • Information obtained from a variety of sources including self-surveys, quality of life surveys, consumer opinion questionnaires, satisfaction surveys, and council meeting minutes are integrated, analyzed/reviewed/trended, and policy/program changes made as a result
    • An agency-wide quality improvement committee with broad representation (including people receiving services) meets periodically and reviews information obtained and analyses of information completed
    • Compass is a standing agenda item at all agency operational meetings
    • Self-survey deficiencies from all programs are disseminated agency-wide to managers and staff
    • Best practices are discussed at weekly administrative meetings and publicized through the agency newsletter
    • Agency executive director meets with line supervisors weekly
    • In addition to strategic planning retreats attended by senior staff and board members, the agency conducts direct care and first line supervisor staff retreats