Medical credentialing is the process of establishing the qualifications of licensed medical professionals and assessing their background and legitimacy. It is one of the most essential pieces of implementing a telehealth program in a timely manner. But what goes into this process for remote providers?
Keep reading to learn what it takes to get a remote provider licensed and credentialed in your state, what’s included in medical credentialing, and how taking the necessary steps for licensing and credentialing helps ensure patient safety.
What is included in medical credentialing?
Hospitals and clinics have a duty to their patients to thoroughly evaluate the experience and skills of their medical staff. They can be held liable for patient injury or mistreatment if they fail to do so. That makes working with an experienced partner who knows the ins and outs of medical credentialing essential.
Typically, the provider’s documents are collected and reviewed for the following:
- Medical education
- Postgraduate training
- Medical licenses (active and historical)
- DEA registrations
- Controlled substance registrations
- Continuing education credits and compliance
- Board certifications
- Employment history
- Privileges/affiliations history
- Professional liability insurance policies held
- Malpractice claim history, including statements from the clinician and court documentation (if applicable)
- Peer reference evaluations
- Federal and/or state background check, often completed via fingerprint collection
- Health screenings like drug/alcohol tests, general physical assessment, and anything necessary for physical interaction with patients, such as a TB test or flu shot
- Online databases – the National Practitioner Data Bank, the Office of the Inspector General’s exclusion database, Medicare’s Opt-Out Affidavits database
- Personal identification like (driver’s license, passport, and social security card)
- Clinician’s personal attestation history
- Disclosure of conflicting financial interests
The list can vary from facility to facility based on their bylaws and group accreditation requirements. Regardless of the requirements, the purpose is to protect the population from medical negligence and malpractice. While it seem that a physician “passing” the credentialing assessment from one facility would mean subsequent facilities should follow suit, history has proven that this assumption can be dangerous.
How medical credentialing helps ensure patient safety
The repetitive and detailed nature of credentialing is designed to protect patients and ensure the legitimacy of a physician’s medical license. However, it is possible to improve the efficiency and speed of credentialing without compromising quality, and this process is what our team at Iris does best. Our main goal as a telemental health company is to bridge the gap in the availability of psychiatric care across the country. We are successful because our goal is to prioritize quality care, and make thorough, diligent, and efficient credentialing our priority.
The role of provider matching in licensing and credentialing
At Iris Telehealth, we recruit and hire top-notch clinicians and help them find placement in our partner facilities across the country, a process we call “provider matching.” Provider matching helps ensure organizations get the best fit for their care team and patients.
Unlike many staffing agencies and locum tenens groups, these matches are meant to be as permanent as a typical onsite provider’s position would be. Providers are Iris employees and treated as independent contractors by the organization they are matched with. We also serve as mediators to ensure the relationship is successful for the long-term. This approach positions patients to get the highest level of care while also helping support the provider’s well-being.
One important benefit of the provider matching process is helping ensure the organization is matched with a clinician who can provide the right specialty care to patients, regardless of location. At Iris, we make that happen by getting the provider fully credentialed and licensed in the state where they’re placed. That way, nothing is standing in between your patients and they care they need.
About Iris Telehealth
Iris Telehealth has helped countless hospitals and community health organizations across the country add telemental healthcare to their list of services while matching them with the best providers for their communities.
We manage all the costs associated with recruiting, supervising, and supporting the best doctors, including paying their salary, PTO, medical benefits, 401k, malpractice insurance, licensing and credentialing fees, and CME expenses.
We believe everyone should have access to compassionate mental health care, and we have made it our mission to find innovative, affordable ways of making this possible! If you’d like to learn more about our services, contact us today.