View all text of Subpart L [§ 96.120 - § 96.137]

§ 96.136 - Independent peer review.

(a) The State shall for the fiscal year for which the grant is provided, provide for independent peer review to assess the quality, appropriateness, and efficacy of treatment services provided in the State to individuals under the program involved, and ensure that at least 5 percent of the entities providing services in the State under such program are reviewed. The programs reviewed shall be representative of the total population of such entities.

(b) The purpose of independent peer review is to review the quality and appropriateness of treatment services. The review will focus on treatment programs and the substance abuse service system rather than on the individual practitioners. The intent of the independent peer review process is to continuously improve the treatment services to alcohol and drug abusers within the State system. “Quality,” for purposes of this section, is the provision of treatment services which, within the constraints of technology, resources, and patient/client circumstances, will meet accepted standards and practices which will improve patient/client health and safety status in the context of recovery. “Appropriateness,” for purposes of this section, means the provision of treatment services consistent with the individual's identified clinical needs and level of functioning.

(c) The independent peer reviewers shall be individuals with expertise in the field of alcohol and drug abuse treatment. Because treatment services may be provided by multiple disciplines, States will make every effort to ensure that individual peer reviewers are representative of the various disciplines utilized by the program under review. Individual peer reviewers must also be knowledgeable about the modality being reviewed and its underlying theoretical approach to addictions treatment, and must be sensitive to the cultural and environmental issues that may influence the quality of the services provided.

(d) As part of the independent peer review, the reviewers shall review a representative sample of patient/client records to determine quality and appropriateness of treatment services, while adhering to all Federal and State confidentiality requirements, including 42 CFR part 2. The reviewers shall examine the following:

(1) Admission criteria/intake process;

(2) Assessments;

(3) Treatment planning, including appropriate referral, e.g., prenatal care and tuberculosis and HIV services;

(4) Documentation of implementation of treatment services;

(5) Discharge and continuing care planning; and

(6) Indications of treatment outcomes.

(e) The State shall ensure that the independent peer review will not involve practitioners/providers reviewing their own programs, or programs in which they have administrative oversight, and that there be a separation of peer review personnel from funding decisionmakers. In addition, the State shall ensure that independent peer review is not conducted as part of the licensing/certification process.

(f) The States shall develop procedures for the implementation of this section and such procedures shall be developed in consultation with the State Medical Director for Substance Abuse Services.