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Cofrac: Accredited inspection of social and medico-social establishments and services

The Cofrac has opened the accreditation for the inspection bodies in charge of social and medico-social establishments and services (SMSES) assessment.

In France more than 45,000 SMSES care for old people, disabled persons or persons with specifics difficulties. A reform provides the French High Authority of Health (HAS) the responsibility to create a new assessment plan and review the recognition method for the bodies in charge of it. The aim of this reform thanks to accreditation is to measure the quality of the services delivered to people by the SMSES.

The assessment plan relies on the decree nr 2022-742 which makes accreditation mandatory for this activity and presents this assessment process set by the HAS.

On the 16th of May 2022, the Cofrac opened the accreditation for inspection bodies according to the ISO/IEC 17020 standard. To start this reform, the aforementioned decree allows the inspection bodies to assess the SMSES as soon as they get involved in an accreditation process. In particular, the Cofrac has developed a plan in two parts:

  1. The first part is the admissibility (administrative and operational) of the request. At the end of this step, the Cofrac delivers or not a positive operational admissibility. This notification allows the inspection body, to register on the Synaé platform and begin to assess the SMSES while awaiting its accreditation.
  2. The last part is the assessment by Cofrac. It intervenes as soon as the inspection body has assessed at least one SMESS according to the new standard. This assessment takes place on the inspection body site and also includes the observation of an assessment inside an SMSES. If the review of the report submitted by the Cofrac teams’ assessors comes to a favourable decision, the accreditation is granted.

 The inspection body has a maximum period of 18 months from the date of its positive operational admissibility to obtain its accreditation.

The accreditation scheme is fully operational. A significant number of inspection bodies applying for accreditation have already entered the accreditation process.