Human Services Agency Achieves National Re-accreditation

BELMONT, Calif. —  The Human Services Agency (HSA) has received national re-accreditation through the New York-based Council on Accreditation (COA).

HSA is the only public agency in California to be accredited across all eligible services areas, including Adoptions, Child Protective Services, Foster Care/Kinship Care, Youth Independent Living, Children’s Receiving Home, Family Resource Centers and Workforce Development Services by the nationally-recognized council.

Public and nonprofit agencies pursue and maintain accreditation to demonstrate the implementation of best practice standards in the field of human services. COA evaluated all aspects of HSAs programs, services, management, and administration.


The accreditation process is an objective, independent, and reliable validation of agency performance. The process involves a detailed review and analysis of an agency’s administration, management, and service delivery functions against international standards of best practice.

To achieve accreditation, HSA first provided nearly 7,000 pages of written evidence demonstrating compliance with best practice standards.  Then, a team of five specially-trained peer reviewers–all experts in the field of human services–confirmed adherence to these standards during three days of on-site case reviews and interviews with clients, staff and stakeholders. Based on their findings, the COA Accreditation Commission voted that HSA had successfully met the criteria for re-accreditation.

COA accreditation and the value of its review process is reflected in it being named by the US State Department as the sole national independent accrediting body under the Hague Convention on Intercountry Adoption to accredit intercountry adoption service providers.

In addition, COA is the only national accreditor designated by the US Department of Defense to develop accreditation standards and processes for human service programs provided to military personnel and their families.

The Human Services Agency received its initial COA accreditation in 2008 and its Vocational Rehabilitation Services program has been accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Services since 1991.

About the Human Services Agency
The County of San Mateo Human Services Agency assists individuals and families to achieve economic self sufficiency, promotes community and family strength, and works to ensure child safety and well-being.

About the Council on Accreditation
Founded in 1977, COA is an independent, not-for-profit accreditor of the full continuum of community-based behavioral health care and social service organizations in the United States and Canada. Over 2,000 organizations voluntary, public, and proprietary; local and statewide; large and small have either successfully achieved COA accreditation or are currently engaged in the process.

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