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Office of Mental Health

Bureau of Inspection and Certification (BIC)


Pursuant to Article 31 of the NYS Mental Hygiene Law, the Commissioner of the Office of Mental Health has the authority and responsibility to set standards for the quality and adequacy of facilities and programs that provide services for the treatment and recovery of persons who suffer from mental illness.

A provider of services is required to obtain an operating certificate (license) issued by the Office of Mental Health (OMH) prior to the operation of such facilities and programs that are subject to the regulatory jurisdiction of the Commissioner of Mental Health.

Prior Approval Review (PAR)

The process for applying for certification (license) from OMH is through the PAR process. Title 14 of the Codes, Rules, and Regulations of the State of New York (14 NYCRR) Part 551 establishes the minimum standards to ensure that entities providing mental health services that seek an operating certificate from the Office of Mental Health will meet appropriate criteria for quality, safety, and fiscal viability.

Please note that a certified program provides an array of planned services, which are pre-defined by regulation to meet the specified needs of persons with mental illness, requires the prior approval of the Commissioner of OMH, and is issued an operating certificate. The standards governing the operation of facilities and programs are contained in various sections of 14 NYCRR.

Comments or questions about the information on this page can be directed to the Division of Quality Management.