Note: The following release was provided by Highland Rivers Health. – KtE

DALTON, Georgia – September 7, 2021 – Highland Rivers Community Service Board, d.b.a. Highland Rivers Health, has received a three-year accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF) International. The three-year accreditation is the highest level of accreditation CARF awards.

The new accreditation is in effect through 2023 and applies retroactively from 2020. The accreditation had been scheduled to take place last year but was delayed due to the pandemic. Highland Rivers’ previous accreditation, in 2017, remained in effect in the interim. 

“This accreditation, more than anything, is an acknowledgement of the commitment of the Highland Rivers Health staff, the more than 650 people who work every day of the year to make a difference in the lives of individuals, families and our communities,” said Melanie Dallas, CEO of Highland Rivers. “I am very proud of this organization and our staff – and proud to have our communities know Highland Rivers continues to provide compassionate care and high-quality behavioral health services.”

The accreditation process included a review of more than 230 key operational areas across 26 agency service lines by a team of seven CARF surveyors. The three-day survey – conducted virtually this year due to the pandemic – took place in May and included a comprehensive review of agency policies, procedures and program plans. 

Surveyors also examined outcome data, service documentation and HIPPA compliance, and conducted interviews with agency staff, board members and individuals receiving services from Highland Rivers Health. 

According to the report, Highland Rivers Health is a respected service provider that embraces the CARF standards to provide a quality experience for the persons served, family members, and other stakeholders. The report goes on to state that the agency’s commitment to continuous quality improvement drives its goal to provide much-needed services and supports in the community, and that agency leaders are recognized as leaders in the field.

Highland Rivers Health has been accredited by CARF since 2003.

About Highland Rivers Health 

Highland Rivers Health provides comprehensive treatment and support services for adults, children, families and veterans affected by mental health disorders, intellectual developmental disabilities and addictive disease. One of the state’s largest public safety net providers, Highland Rivers operates more than two-dozen treatment facilities across a 4,400-square mile area of Northwest Georgia that includes Bartow, Cherokee, Fannin, Floyd, Gilmer, Gordon, Haralson, Murray, Paulding, Pickens, Polk and Whitfield counties, and serves nearly 16,000 consumers annually.

Highland Rivers is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF) and is a Tier 1 safety net Core Provider for the Georgia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities. For more information, visit

About CARF International 

CARF is an independent, nonprofit accreditor of health and human services, enhancing the lives of persons served worldwide. The accreditation process applies CARF’s internationally recognized standards during a site survey conducted by peer surveyors. Accreditation, however, is an ongoing process that distinguishes a provider’s service delivery and signals to the public that the provider is committed to continuous performance improvement, responsive to feedback, and accountable to the community and its other stakeholders.

CARF accreditation promotes providers’ demonstration of value and Quality Across the Lifespan® of millions of persons served through application of rigorous organizational and program standards organized around the ASPIRE to Excellence® continuous quality improvement framework. CARF accreditation has been the recognized benchmark of quality health and human services for more than 50 years. For more information or to contact CARF, please visit

Kevin The Editor

The former Editor of The Polk County Standard Journal and a journalist with more than a decade of experience in Northwest Georgia, Kevin Myrick is the Editor and Publisher of Polk.Today. An Auburn graduate,...