National Accreditation Board for Hospitals

National Accreditation Board for Hospitals

National Accreditation Board for Hospitals (NABH) – The accreditations that guide you to the right healthcare provider.

What is your first consideration when you are diagnosed with an ailment? You, definitely, would want to get the best treatment from the best hospital. And what defines this Best? It should be best in terms of patient care, safety, use of latest technology, doctors, transparency and positive clinical outcomes, to name a few. Now, considering the complexity of the parameters involved in this search (we definitely can’t go on trying and testing every hospital in the vicinity, like one would go to checkout any other clothing store or eatery). It’s practically impossible to know which Hospital is the best to get admitted to. NABH, in that respect, provides the perfect solution to the ever complex paradigm. 

What is NABH (National Accreditation Board for Hospitals)?

NABH (National Accreditation Board for Hospitals and Healthcare Providers) is a constituent board of the Quality Council of India (QCI) that sets standards and operates accreditation programs for healthcare organizations.

NABH in India has been instrumental in ensuring quality healthcare services through its accreditation standards. One significant aspect that NABH has addressed is cybersecurity, recognizing the increasing importance of protecting healthcare data and systems from cyber threats. The NABH cybersecurity standard aims to safeguard sensitive patient information, maintain the integrity of healthcare systems, and ensure continuity of care in an increasingly digital healthcare landscape.

The NABH Panel

Wondering what’s the Panel for “National Accreditation Board for Hospitals and Healthcare Providers” like? Well, this panel is like a group of experts in the healthcare world. Their job? To check out hospitals, clinics, and similar places to see if they’re up to the job and that too – sincerely.

They actually look at a bunch of stuff, like how safe patients are, how clean the place is, if the staff knows what they’re doing, and if the place has all the right equipment. Basically, they make sure the place is doing a good job taking care of people.

So, when you see a hospital or clinic showing off its NABH accreditation certificate, it means they’ve passed the test from these experts. It’s like a five star review by an industry expert that says, “Hey, they’re doing a great job at keeping you safe and healthy!”

National Accreditation Board for Hospitals and Healthcare Providers
Benefits of NABH Accreditation

Scope of NABH

NABH’s scope comprises various aspects of healthcare, ensuring quality services and patient safety. Accreditation covers hospitals, clinics, and healthcare providers, conforming their adherence to rigorous standards. From infrastructure and patient care to staff competency and safety protocols, National Accreditation Board for Hospitals and Healthcare Providers certification signifies excellence in healthcare delivery. The scope may be summarized in the below points:

  • Accreditation of healthcare providers to ensure they meet standardized quality benchmarks.
  • Implementation of promotion initiatives aimed at maintaining quality standards across various healthcare services such as Nursing Excellence programs and Laboratory certification programs.
  • Conducting public awareness activities including advertisements and organizing workshops, lectures, and seminars focused on educating patients about their rights and responsibilities.
  • Ensuring access to healthcare services, thorough assessment of patient needs, and continuity of care throughout the treatment process.
  • Monitoring and management of medication processes to minimize errors and ensure patient safety.
  • Implementing measures for hospital infection control to prevent the spread of infections and ensure a safe environment for patients and staff.
  • Upholding and sustaining high-quality standards in healthcare delivery.
  • Management accountability in overseeing the implementation of quality standards and continuous improvement initiatives.
  • Facility management and safety protocols to maintain a safe and conducive environment for patients, staff, and visitors.
  • Human resource management practices to ensure the recruitment, training, and retention of qualified healthcare professionals.
  • Implementation and maintenance of robust information management systems to facilitate efficient healthcare delivery and record-keeping.
  • Recognition and accreditation of various healthcare quality courses and workshops to enhance professional development and skill-building within the healthcare workforce.

What are the contents of National Accreditation Board for Hospitals and Healthcare Providers (NABH)?

The NABH has 10 chapters, 100 standards and 503 objective elements. Below are the list of standards, compiled under different sections:

Section I – Patient Centered Standards

  1. Access, Assessment and continuity of care (AAC) – 15 Standards and 78 Objective Elements
  2. Patient Right and Education (PRE) – 5 Standards and 29 Objective Elements
  3. Care of Patients (COP) – 18 Standards and 105 Objective Elements
  4. Management of Medication (MOM) – 13 Standards and 61 Objective Elements
  5. Hospital Infection Control (HIC) – 9 Standards and 44 Objective Elements

Section II – Healthcare Organization Management Standards

  1. Continuous Quality Improvement(CQI) – 6 Standards and 37 Objective Elements
  2. Responsibility of Management (ROM) – 5 Standards and 20 Objective Elements
  3. Facility Management and Safety (FMS) – 9 Standards and 41 Objective Elements
  4. Human Resource Management (HRM) – 13 Standards and 47 Objective Elements
  5. Information Management System (IMS) – 7 Standards and 41 Objective Elements

Consider visiting (NABH Standards ppt) if you want to further delve into the contents.

Importance of NABH Cybersecurity Standard:

The importance of NABH’s cybersecurity standard cannot be undermined. In today’s ever-demanding world of digital healthcare, protecting patient data and ensuring system integrity are of utmost importance. NABH’s cybersecurity standard addresses these concerns, safeguarding sensitive information, maintaining trust, and ensuring the uninterrupted delivery of healthcare services in an increasingly vulnerable digital world.

  1. Protection of Patient Information: Healthcare institutions handle vast amounts of sensitive patient data, including medical records, personal information, and payment details. The NABH cybersecurity standard prioritizes measures to protect this information from unauthorized access, data breaches, and cyber-attacks.
  2. Maintaining Trust and Confidence: Patients entrust healthcare providers with their most intimate and personal information. Adherence to cybersecurity standards not only protects this data but also fosters trust and confidence among patients regarding the confidentiality and security of their health records.
  3. Preventing Disruption of Services: Cyber-attacks such as ransomware can disrupt healthcare services, leading to delays in treatment, compromised patient safety, and financial losses. Compliance with NABH cybersecurity standards helps mitigate such risks and ensures the continuity of healthcare services.
  4. Legal and Regulatory Compliance: Healthcare organizations must comply with various laws and regulations related to data protection and patient privacy, such as the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) in the United States or the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in Europe. The NABH cybersecurity standard assists healthcare providers in meeting these compliance requirements.

Key Components of National Accreditation Board for Hospitals and Healthcare Providers Cybersecurity Standard:

NABH, the National Accreditation Board for Hospitals and Healthcare Providers, ensures quality healthcare through its accreditation standards. Key elements include setting standards, operating accreditation programs, and addressing cybersecurity concerns. NABH safeguards patient information, maintains healthcare system integrity, and promotes continuity of care. It employs expert panels for assessments, enhancing patient safety and cleanliness, validating staff competence, and certifying equipment adequacy.

  1. Risk Assessment and Management: Healthcare institutions are required to conduct regular risk assessments to identify potential cybersecurity threats and vulnerabilities. Based on these assessments, appropriate risk management strategies, including preventive and mitigative measures, should be implemented.
  2. Data Encryption and Access Control: The standard emphasizes the encryption of sensitive data both in transit and at rest to prevent unauthorized access. Access to patient information should be restricted based on roles and responsibilities. This can be ensured by setting up mechanisms in place to monitor and audit user activities.
  3. Secure Network Infrastructure: Healthcare facilities must establish secure network infrastructures with robust firewalls, intrusion detection/prevention systems, and regular security updates to protect against external threats and unauthorized access to internal systems.
  4. Incident Response and Business Continuity Planning: In the event of a cybersecurity incident, healthcare providers should have well-defined incident response procedures in place to minimize the impact and restore normal operations swiftly. Additionally, business continuity and disaster recovery plans should be developed and tested regularly.
  5. Employee Training and Awareness: Staff members play a crucial role in maintaining cybersecurity hygiene. Training programs should educate employees about best practices for data security, recognizing phishing attempts, and adhering to organizational cybersecurity policies.
  6. Vendor Management: Healthcare organizations often rely on third-party vendors for various services and solutions. The NABH cybersecurity standard includes provisions for assessing the cybersecurity posture of vendors and establishing contractual agreements to ensure the security of shared data and systems.

How is NABH Accreditation Helpful

NABH accreditation offers well-rounded benefits to healthcare organizations. Beyond validation of quality standards, it enhances patient trust, nurtures stakeholder confidence, and provides a competitive edge in the healthcare market. From improved patient outcomes to streamlined processes, NABH accreditation signifies excellence and commitment to delivering high-quality care. Let’s dive into the importance it holds:

For the patients:

  • Patients are informed about the organization’s services.
  • Patients undergo assessment and treatment with appropriate care plans.
  • Services are delivered by credentialed and privileged healthcare professionals.
  • Patient care is uniform, continuous, and multidisciplinary.
  • A safe and organized medication process is provided, guided by written protocols.
  • Continuous monitoring mitigates medication errors and adverse reactions.
  • Implementation of national/international patient safety goals.
  • Patients are informed of their rights and educated about responsibilities.
  • Informed consent is obtained for care.
  • Patients and families receive healthcare information in understandable language.
  • Prioritizing of effective patient-centered communication.
  • A safe environment is maintained for patients, families, staff, and visitors.
  • Risks of healthcare-associated infections for patients and visitors are reduced.

For Healthcare Organization and its Personnel

  • Accreditation signifies commitment to safe, patient-centric, and quality care.
  • Quality care boosts patient satisfaction and community trust.
  • Governance adheres to professional, ethical, and regulatory standards.
  • Encourages a culture of patient safety and continuous improvement.
  • Prioritizing of patient safety and risk management in hospital management.
  • Ongoing training enhances staff competencies and fosters professional development.
  • Systems are in place to prevent adverse incidents and address sentinel events promptly.
  • Staff receive training in personal and patient safety, including CPR and disaster response.
  • Lastly yet importantly, the organization promotes the well-being of its staff, both physically and mentally.

NABH Accreditation Process

Obtaining NABH accreditation involves a rigorous and time-consuming process, it, nevertheless, offers significant enhancement of prestige. This recognition, thus, sets healthcare providers apart in a competitive market. The steps of the NABH Accreditation process are as follows:

  1. Application Submission: Firstly, healthcare organizations (HCOs) interested in NABH accreditation must complete an application form and submit it along with the required fee, providing comprehensive and accurate details about their services.
  2. Application Registration: Subsequently, upon receipt of the completed application form, necessary documents, and fees, the NABH Secretariat acknowledges the application.
  3. Appointment of Principal Assessor: A primary assessor is then appointed to oversee both the pre-assessment and on-site assessment of the HCO, ensuring the thorough evaluation of the organization.
  4. Pre-Assessment: Prior to the pre-assessment, the HCO conducts a self-assessment and internal audit to ensure its readiness, typically within three months of application submission.
  5. Assessment: Subsequently, following the pre-assessment and addressing any identified deficiencies, NABH proposes an assessment team for the final assessment, to be completed within six months of the pre-assessment visit.
  6. Assessment Report Review: Once the assessment is completed, NABH carefully examines the assessment report, ensuring that any non-conformities raised by the assessment team are understood by the HCO.
  7. Accreditation Committee Review: Lastly, after the HCO takes satisfactory corrective action, a NABH officer compiles all relevant information gathered during the application processing and assessment, preparing a summary for the accreditation committee.
  8. Accreditation Certificate Issuance: In the end, upon approval of the accreditation recommendation, the NABH officer issues the accreditation certificate to the organization.

Documents Required for NABH Accreditation:

Below is the general requisite to get the National Accreditation Board for Hospitals and Healthcare Providers:

  • System Manual
  • System Procedures – NOCs
  • Directors’ IDs And Address proofs
  • List of shareholders and their contact information
  • Policy
  • Objectives
  • Mission & Vision
  • Standard Operating Procedures
  • Checklist
  • Forms
  • Formats
  • Records
  • Various permission documents.

Accreditations Offered by NABH

National Accreditation Board for Hospitals and Healthcare Providers administers various accreditation programs, including, but not limited to, the following:

  • Hospitals: NABH standards uphold high-quality care, safety, and patient satisfaction across hospitals of diverse sizes and ownership structures.
  • Small Healthcare Organizations (SHO): These standards offer a pathway for standardization tailored to hospitals and nursing homes with up to 50 beds, ensuring quality care.
  • Blood Banks: Enforcing compliance with stringent safety and quality protocols at blood centers to safeguard blood products.
  • Medical Imaging Services (MIS): NABH provides comprehensive guidelines to ensure the delivery of quality diagnostic and interventional imaging services.
  • Dental Facilities: More emphasis on patient safety, care quality, staff training, and continuous knowledge enhancement in response to dental services.
  • Allopathic Clinics: Aligning requirements with hospital standards to uphold quality assurance in allopathic clinics.
  • Medical Laboratory Services: Mandatory adherence to high-quality and safe practices, spanning from sample collection to result reporting.
  • AYUSH Hospitals: These standards promote safe and effective traditional and alternative treatments within AYUSH hospitals.
  • Primary Health Center (PHC): Establishment of simple and pragmatic quality assurance criteria to enhance primary healthcare facilities.
  • Clinical Trial (Ethics Committee): Adherence to established norms is vital to bolster the safety of clinical trials conducted in India.
  • Panchakarma Clinics: Authorized Panchakarma clinics adhere to nationally recognized quality and safety standards to ensure efficacy and safety.
  • Eye Care Organizations: Accreditation elevates the standard and safety of eye treatments for patients and enhances service quality, particularly in critical scenarios.

International Linkages

NABH holds a significant position within the International Society for Quality in Health Care (ISQua) as both an institutional member and a participant on its Board and accreditation Council. Moreover, the standards established by NABH for hospitals have received accreditation from ISQua, underscoring their alignment with global benchmarks recognized by ISQua. This accreditation, essentially, confirms that hospitals accredited by NABH meet international standards, thereby gaining recognition on a global scale.

ISQua is an esteemed international organization that grants approval to Accreditation Bodies within the healthcare sector, signifying the equivalence of accreditation programs across member countries. Additionally, NABH holds the distinction of being a founding member of the newly established Asian Society for Quality in Healthcare (ASQua), thereby reflecting its commitment to advancing quality standards and practices in healthcare.


To sum it up, the NABH cybersecurity standard serves as a comprehensive framework for safeguarding healthcare data, systems, and services against evolving cyber threats. By adhering to these standards, healthcare providers can, therefore, not only protect patient information and ensure regulatory compliance but also enhance trust and confidence among patients and stakeholders. There’s no denying the fact that in an era where digital transformation is reshaping the healthcare industry, cybersecurity remains a critical component of delivering safe and reliable healthcare services.

At ABS, we have a team of professionals that can guide you at every step of your accreditation journey. Contact Us today to know more.

Also, if you are looking for other quality management system services, kindly visit Our offerings to get more insight into how we can help you pave the way towards your quality certification goals.

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