After you complete the application, your job is largely done. But for the Barton credentialing team, our job is just beginning.
Credentialing is essentially an extensive background check. Credentialing verifies the locum physician or nurse practitioner’s education and training, work history (see, Perfect CV), previous licensure, and clinical competence.
Healthcare organizations have varying degrees of intensity in their credentialing process. For example, verification requirements of a provider’s work history can range from the time of graduation to the past ten years — even none at all. These credentialing rules are typically dictated by bylaws, Joint Commission Standards, etc. and can directly affect the duration of the credentialing process. The more complete and accurate an application is the faster and easier it is for your credentialer to complete your file and ultimately reduce or eliminate the amount of additional paperwork required.
Once our credentialing department receives the completed application with the required credentialing documents, the Barton credentialer submits it to the organization’s credentialing department. The organization processes it into their database and sends out verifications and reference checks. The Barton credentialer assists the organization’s credentialing department in getting timely responses so the locum tenens provider is ready for the intended start date. Once the process is completed — meaning all the verifications are back, the references are positive, and the background check is completed — the file is reviewed, and the locum is granted privileges to work at the facility.
A verification is typically a one- or two-page form that is sent to each source (i.e., medical schools or hospitals/practices). Each source verifies the dates the locum worked and whether the locum left in “good standing.” If anything negative happened, it will be documented in the verification.
Most facilities require primary source verifications, which means the verification form is sent directly between the staffing organization and the source. The Barton credentialing team provides the organization with the appropriate contact information to ensure the form goes exactly where it needs to go in order to get completed and sent back as quickly as possible. During the process we are continuously following up with the sources to make sure they received the forms, promptly complete them, and return them to the organization. The same process applies for obtaining references.
Once the verifications and references are received, the file is considered complete and will wait to be presented at a credentialing committee meeting where full privileges can be granted. Oftentimes, temporary, locum, or emergency privileges are given beforehand in order to meet the staffing demands of the organization. In order to get these privileges, the completed file will be reviewed and signed by chiefs and department heads. However, some locums may not qualify for these privileges if they have any malpractice or licensing issues.
While Barton Associates is not a Credentials Verification Office (CVO), there are some internal steps that we take in order to prepare for the above process. Some of these steps include:
- Collect recent references.
- Collect completed application with credentials (see, Essential Credentials).
- Run a criminal background check.
- Run an AMA profile to verify education and training.
- Collect appropriate contact information for credentialing offices, graduate medical education offices, registrars, and other relevant entities and follow up with them.
- Supply our own references and verifications, if applicable.
- Request any additional credentials that we can (i.e. claim’s histories, case/procedure logs, immunization/titer records, etc…).
- Set up TB tests, titer draws, drug screens, chest ex rays, etc.
Our goal in the credentialing department at Barton Associates is to ensure the locum goes to work and the organization has a quality provider to meet their demands. We liaise between both sides to make the process fast and easy so the only thing the locum needs to worry about is what scrubs to wear.