The American Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Association (ACPA) and Cleft Palate Foundation (CPF) created the Commission on Approval of Teams (CAT) to manage an approval process which facilitates the improvement of team care and ensures that accurate information can be provided by ACPA and CPF to patients and families/caregivers regarding services provided by those Teams that meet specified standards.
It is important to note that Team approval is a voluntary and non-exclusionary process. There is no judgment or statement of quality made about established Teams that have not selected to apply for approval; nor is holding approval required in order for health care professionals to organize and advertise themselves as a team. However, all Teams that do choose to undergo an external evaluation and demonstrate compliance with the standards for team care will be listed by ACPA and CPF as approved Teams. CPF will make referrals only to those approved Teams listed.
The Commission on Approval of Teams, the American Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Association, and the Cleft Palate Foundation offer no opinion as to any specific course of treatment for an individual patient and any decisions to undertake a course of treatment, and the content of such treatment is a matter solely between the patient and the treating Team.
The Approval Process
Each year, the CAT reviews applications for approval from teams operating within a certain geographic region of the United States and Canada according to the following cycle:
- April – current application form is available
- July 1st – applications are due
- November – Teams are notified of their approval status
- January 1st (following year) – approval status takes effect and Team Listings are updated
Approval is for a period of up to 5 years. Teams which have not been approved by the CAT - either because the team was denied approval or because the team did not apply with its region - may reapply during the next cycle.