Ten months ago, HAE International and the non-profit organization of leading clinical and research facilities in the field of allergy and asthma GA2LEN established GA2LEN/HAEi Angioedema Centers of Reference and Excellence – or in short ACARE.
“The joint venture with GA2LEN fulfills our longstanding goal of establishing a worldwide network of accredited angioedema care centers. Together we work on developing ACARE, ensuring that it is an attractive partner for HAE treating physicians all over the world”, says HAE International President & CEO Anthony J. Castaldo.
Establishing ACARE through cooperation with GA2LEN has given HAE International the certified accreditation program that the organization has been looking for as well as an inclusive solution where nobody will be left out as ACARE aims to be a worldwide network of specialized treatment centers.
“GA2LEN/HAEi ACARE is based on 32 requirements that must be met for a hospital to become accredited. Among these requirements are multidisciplinary approach, structured and valid protocols of diagnosis and management, assessment of patient satisfaction and unmet needs, support of the ACARE network, a “Never give up” attitude, knowledge and use of current nomenclature as well as classification of angioedema, family screening, scientific and educational activities as well as a cooperation with the patient organization in their country”, says Anthony J. Castaldo:
“If you wish to become an ACARE Center, you reach out to the ACARE office and apply. It’s a very simple process: The office will assign an auditor to you – that’s the head or the deputy of another ACARE – and they then come to you or set up a virtual meeting to go over the criteria to make sure that all of them are met. Once this is done the recommendation for the decision goes to the Steering Committee, and then you are accredited and receive a certificate valid for two years. It is then followed by a re-audit to make sure that the high standards are being met over time. By this process we grow as a network because each audit and re-audit is a nice opportunity for one ACARE center to talk to another ACARE center, to learn from each other, and to work together on projects and other initiatives.”
Interacting with patient organizations is within the criteria: You must have a link to a patient organization in order to be accredited. But ACARE is the evolution of this because this is not just being linked to a patient organization – you must have true partnering with the organization.