Department of Communities, Disability Services and Seniors

Other Accreditation - Process and resources

Evidence of other accreditation or certification

This information is provided to assist organisations funded under a service agreement with the Department of Communities, Disability Services and Seniors (DCDSS) or the Department of Child Safety, Youth and Women (DCSYW) that hold existing accreditation or certification under other industry standards or quality systems.

New providers of disability services in Queensland seeking recognition of alternative accreditation for the purposes of NDIS registration should see Recognition of alternative accreditation or certification - for new providers of disability services in Qld (DOCX, 44 KB).

To reduce unnecessary duplication, where an organisation's existing accreditation aligns well with HSQF and is appropriate for the types of services funded by DCDSS and/or DCSYW, organisations can request recognition of their alternative accreditation to demonstrate compliance with HSQF.

Evidence of other accreditation is generally accepted for the service types listed below.

Service TypesApproved alternative accreditation/certification
Seniors legal and support services National Accreditation Scheme for Community Legal Services
Organisations providing peak body services ISO 9001
Queensland Community Care service types Home Care Standards (Australian Government) or other relevant accreditation or certification as negotiated with Queensland Community Care
Disability services providing indirect advocacy, information and alternative forms of communication and other support (6.01 – 7.03 inclusive) ISO 9001
Disability services providing advocacy (6.01 - 7.03 inclusive) National Disability Advocacy Program Quality Assurance Program
Organisations that provide training services Australian Quality Training Framework

Standards mapping

Independent mapping of a number of commonly used standards and accreditation systems determining the level of alignment with the Human Services Quality Standards has been obtained:

  • National Standards for Disability Services
  • RACGP Standards for General Practice
  • National Regulatory Code for Community Housing
  • Residential Aged Care Quality Standards
  • Home Care Standards (Australian Government)
  • Standard on Culturally Secure Practice (Alcohol and other Drug Sector)
  • Attendant Care Industry Standards
  • QIC Health and Community Service Standards

The outcomes of this mapping including areas of alignment and gaps are outlined in the following standards comparison tools:

Application and Assessment Process

Application process

All organisations wishing to demonstrate compliance with HSQF using other accreditation must have approval to do so. Applications for recognition are considered on a case-by-case basis. Interested organisations should complete the Application for recognition of alternative accreditation under the Human Services Quality Framework form (PDF, 99 KB) Application for recognition of alternative accreditation under the Human Services Quality Framework form (DOCX, 44 KB) and submit it with relevant accreditation documents to the Human Services Quality Framework team at for consideration. 

Assessment process

Requests of recognition of alternative accreditation are assessed against a range of factors including:

  • degree of alignment between the alternative standards/accreditation with the HSQF
  • relevance of the accreditation to the type of services the organisation is funded to provide
  • the type and complexity of the services provided
  • vulnerability of people using services
  • level of funding investment
  • any service specific mandatory evidence requirements that may apply to the services provided under the HSQF.

Assessment outcomes

Organisations will be advised in writing of the outcome of their request - there are three possible outcomes:

Assessment outcomeAction
Accepted The organisation will need to maintain their alternative accreditation for the term of any service agreement with a Queensland Government department.
When an alternative accreditation expires, the organisation will need to provide a copy of their new accreditation and related audit/review report to the relevant departmental contract officer.
Organisations will not be required to complete a separate self-assessment or independent third-party audit against the HSQF.
Note: Where an organisation receives new funding for service types different to those currently provided, a reassessment of the approved alternative accreditation is required.
Partial acceptance The organisation will need to undertake a 'gap' self-assessment against key requirements (such as legislative or contractual safeguards) specified by HSQF. Organisations will be advised a timeframe for lodgement of the gap self-assessment and the continuous improvement pla
Not accepted The organisation will need to comply with the required demonstration method - self-assessment or certification. Organisations will be advised a timeframe for completion of these activities.

As a general rule an alternative accreditation will not be accepted where it has been assessed as having limited alignment with the HSQF (less than 60% match), and/or has no direct application to services in Queensland of a similar type and/or where mandatory service specific requirements apply under the HSQF.

For example, alternative accreditation will not be accepted where an organisation is funded to provide child protection placement services in-scope of licensing or provides disability services subject to restrictive practices.

Streamlining opportunities

Organisations with alternative accreditation that is not accepted may find they can align HSQF audit activities with other audit/review activities. For example the HSQF JAS-ANZ auditing scheme makes it simpler for organisations with dual ISO 9001 and HSQF certification to undergo concurrent audits allowing relevant evidence to be considered once rather than on two separate occasions.

Further information about streamlining audits can be found in the HSQF Scheme Rules available on the JAS-ANZ website.


Providers registering to deliver prescribed services under the NDIS need to submit applications for HSQF assessment before
1 April 2019 - the department will cease accepting applications for HSQF assessment and approval from 1 April 2019.

After this time a new application will need to be made to the NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission from 1 July 2019, when this new independent agency responsible for the quality and safety of NDIS services will be established in Queensland.