Step by Step Process


Interested Organization (IO) contacts GAACS to inquire about the industry specific accreditation standards and procedures applicable. The IO submits initial Application and Nonrefundable fee. Upon receipt of application, nonrefundable fee, and supporting documentation, GAACS will review and approve the application package. A notice of Candidate Member Status and access to the My GAACS Account is issued.

Self Study

Candidate Member participates in Accreditation Orientation. Candidate member designates staff member to put together the Accreditation File, and communicate with assigned GAACS Consultant. Candidate Member reviews the Accreditation Standards Manual, completes the Self Study Evaluation, and gathers supporting documentation for submission to the My GAACS Account.Upon receipt of the Self Study Evidence, GAACS will within 14 days send written notification of approval to proceed to the Request Site Visit Inspection.

OnSite Visit

Upon receipt of IO’s On-site Visit Request Form and nonrefundable fee, GAACS schedules the onsite visit. An onsite visit is conducted at the IO site(s). The visiting committee makes a written report and recommendation to GAACS whether to 1) approve, 2) deny, or 3) defer accreditation pending further review. The site visit is conducted in accordance with the What to Expect During the On- site Validation Inspection

Final Determination

GAACS reviews the Visiting Committee’s recommendations, response(s) from the candidate member organization (if any), and Self Study Evidence and makes the final decision to grant, defer, or deny accreditation.



GAACS will forward the applicable certificate of accreditation, Notice of Accreditation Letter, and related certifications to Candidate Member. The Candidate Member may advertise as a GAACS Accredited Program upon receipt of written notification of accredited status.



A provider's accreditation decision may be deferred for several reasons including: a.) allow clarification of its program to demonstrate compliance, or b.) allow time for the program to complete a corrective action to meet accreditation standards. A remedial inspection may be required to demonstrate compliance.



If GAACS decision is not favorable or a recommendation is made to deny accreditation then the IO/Candidate Member has 30 days to appeal the decision. Failure to appeal an adverse decision within 30 days shall constitute forfeiture of the right to appeal. If the Candidate Member timely appeals then a hearing will be scheduled within 45 days from receipt of the formal appeal. 

Continual Accreditation

To maintain accreditation, the Accredited Program must submit an annual report and applicable nonrefundable fee no later than June 30th every year with exception to the year of initial accreditation/re-accreditation. See Program Annual Report.


Within six months before expiration date of the current accreditation, GAACS accredited programs must re-apply for accreditation in accordance with the most recent Accreditation Process. See New/Renewal Application Forms.