With the year less than a month old, 10 states—Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wyoming—have already introduced legislation that would expedite the process of issuing licenses for physicians who wish to practice in multiple states.
The Interstate Medical Licensure Compact was created by the Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB) to serve as a new licensing option that would allow qualified physicians seeking to practice in multiple states the ability to apply for an expedited license in all states participating in the Compact.
“The Interstate Medical Licensure Compact, which is now being considered in state legislatures across the country, offers an effective solution to the question of how best to balance patient safety and quality care with the needs of a growing and changing health care market,” said Dr. Humayun J. Chaudhry, president and CEO of FSMB in a press release. “We’re pleased to have supported the state medical board community as it developed this groundbreaking model legislation and look forward to working with states that wish to implement this innovative approach to licensure.”
Earlier this month, FSMB also launched a new webpage, which includes a map of the states that have introduced legislation, links to the bills, and other helpful information. The FSMB calls it “a one-stop shop for all compact related questions.”
The page could be a valuable resource for locum tenens providers who often work assignments in multiple states and thus must obtain multiple state licenses.
The requirements for licensure vary widely in many states, as illustrated in Barton’s State Physician Licensing Guide. The licensing process can be long and difficult for locum tenens physicians in certain states, which can be particularly problematic for organizations that have an immediate need.
If states adopt a streamlined licensing system, healthcare organizations in those states will have greater access to locum tenens providers. It will also make it easier to facilitate telemedicine interactions, which require physicians be licensed in the state where the patient is located.
The licensing and credentialing team at Barton Associates is monitoring state adoption of the Interstate Medical Licensure Compact as part of its commitment to making the licensing and credentialing process as quick and efficient as possible for all of our locums.