The Oct. 24 Federal Register by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) states "the Joint Commission received conditional approval for its critical-access hospital (CAH) accreditation program, but the program was placed on probation until it fixes the gaps between its standards and Medicare's conditions of participation."
Under updated "conditions, critical-access hospitals are allowed to provide inpatient psychiatric or rehabilitation services in a distinct-part unit as long as those services comply with hospital requirements in other sections of Medicare's conditions of participation." After the Joint Commission "has submitted its revised distinct-part unit standards [to reflect the updated conditions], the CMS will conduct a survey to validate the changes."
The Joint Commission CAH accreditation pro has been placed under a 180 day probationary period from November 21, 2008 through May 28, 2009 to revise its accreditation standards to meet or exceed CMS standards set forth in the Medicare conditions of participation. The conditional approval period applies to TJC CAH accreditation granted between November 21, 2008 through November 21, 2001.
The full Federal Register announcement can be found here: