During The COVID-19 Pandemic, Patient Outcomes Should Drive Decision-Making about Credentialing

April 1, 2021
April 1, 2021

Credentialing and licensure considerations may be taking a backseat to patient urgency during the COVID-19 crisis. What doesn’t change in this emergency is the responsibility, first and foremost, to make sure that patients are treated appropriately by having care delivered by professionals with the competency to help them, concludes Todd Sagin, President and National Medical Director, Sagin HealthCare Consulting.

Rely on Common Sense and Consider Patient Outcomes First

“We can’t lose sight of that as we loosen some of the procedures and processes which we have historically used to assess competence among all privileged practitioners,” he says. “In this time of crisis, I think one of the most important things to keep in mind is that common sense should prevail. If you can do something that makes sense to help patients, then go ahead and do it unless there is a clear prescription against doing it. Be prepared to defend that decision, but you’re going to be given a great deal of latitude in this time. In the midst of a crisis is not where we ask for permission. Instead we do what needs to be done, and we then ask for forgiveness. There is a lot of latitude that we have to make the appropriate decisions on behalf of patients.”

Credentialing Coming to Terms with ‘Gray Areas’

“I think that’s one of the hard areas for people that work in the credentialing profession,” adds Vicki Searcy, Vice President, Consulting Services, at VerityStream. “A lot of us don’t like gray areas. We like things to be very defined, and we are in a time right now where we are in some gray areas. That common sense has to prevail is a really important consideration. I think when we make decisions that are in the best interest of the patient, we can defend those.”

This blog post concludes a series of excerpts from the VerityStream article, “An Upside Down World: Pandemic Creates Process Challenges and Opportunities for Licensure and Credentialing.” The article also covers:

  • Provider Support has a can-do spirit
  • Telehealth plays prominent role in new reality
  • Keeping processes effective, but uncomplicated, will be essential
  • Today’s adaptations and new procedures are likely tomorrow’s business as usual

PLEASE NOTE: The information in the article excerpted here was considered current at the time of its publishing. However, the COVID-19 pandemic is an ever-evolving disaster due to new findings, data, and availability of resources. Please refer to the CDC website for the latest detailed information when you need it.

In the midst of continual healthcare change some things stay the same, like the need for comprehensive provider credentialing, privileging, and enrollment processes. In today’s value-based environment, operational efficiency is critical. Conducting manual verifications, completing paper forms by hand or taking time to deliver files to various locations across the hospital or the system is not cost-effective. Learn more about making VerityStream your comprehensive provider solutions partner.