Leveraging Patient Data to Support the Analysis of Clinical Competency

Leveraging Patient Data to Support the Analysis of Clinical Competency

January 9, 2023
January 9, 2023

Medical Staff Professionals (MSPs) are tasked with keeping patients safe, and one of the ways that’s done is by gathering, storing, and updating patient data to ensure they’re receiving the right treatment from fully privileged and credentialed providers.

In session two of our 10-part Clinical Solutions Webinar Series, we discuss the importance of leveraging patient information to support clinical solutions tools in CredentialStream®. You may watch a recording of the presentation here, or read below for session highlights.

The Importance of Patient Data in CredentialStream

When discussing patient data within CredentialStream, we’re zeroing in on both the Privilege and Evaluate product areas, as they utilize patient data for case review, performance privileges, and performance metrics. One thing to note is that all of these functions rely greatly on the patient data set being imported for calculations and presentation of information. Importing patient data is a critical component of analyzing performance so your healthcare organizations can remain compliant with regulatory requirements related to clinical competency assessment and deliver the highest quality care.

Reports are built using the patient data inputted into the system. Of course, it goes without saying, patient data should be clean to ensure accuracy and dependability.

Determining your patient data set

So, what data will be used when analyzing performance? As you may have already guessed, much of the source data will come primarily from your EMR. That is where you’ll have access to basic patient and encounter data, and it’s the best place to source data to be imported into CredentialStream. The data you pull will inform case review, performance metrics, and performance privileges. The patient data you will need to import includes:

  • Inpatient records
    • For OPPE and performance metrics purposes
  • Emergency encounters
    • Used for performance metrics
  • Outpatient encounters
    • Used for performance and holistic review of providers
  • Additional/optional data: You have the option to bring this data in, but depending on your needs, you may or may not want to
    • Series (patients who come in for services on a regular basis)
    • Clinic/Doctor’s Office/Urgent care
    • Observations

The other data set to consider are the many provider types. CredentialStream stores credentialed providers, which include: MD/DOs, NPs, PAs, and CRNAs, but not necessarily everybody who touches a patient in the hospital. This is an important discussion to have within your organization to be sure all necessary data is brought in. Within CredentialStream’s performance metrics solutions, different attributes are assigned to providers:

  • Admitting
  • Attending
  • Discharge
  • Procedure
  • Consult providers

When determining what data to extract from patient imports, there are a few other items to take into consideration.

  • Extracts should also include encounters where the patient may not have been discharged yet, as well as discharges going back at least 45 days to ensure coding is complete. This is important for case review purposes so that you can connect admitted patient data as early as possible.
  • It is also recommended that you pull data for an additional week beyond the 45 days. For example, if an organization is performing weekly extracts then the data range should be for admissions or discharges going back one week plus 45 days. This will capture any coding for patients admitted or discharged within the last 52 days.

Importing Patient Data

When you first access the import map within CredentialStream you land on a general tab that contains the name of import, file name, type of file, and additional match criteria. Most facilities organize their data by matching patient IDs. Note, file names need to be standardized to allow for scheduling automation. This means file names that include a date and time are not accepted as they interfere with CredentialStream’s functionality.

There are a variety of sub-menu options that allow for more customization:

  • Test: allows you to see how the data will come in before you start the import to ensure it’s set up properly.
  • View Log: once the import is done, the system will keep a log of all the imports. You can see how many records were in the file, how many matches with a record are already in the system, how many were added, and how many errors there were, if any.
    • It’s important to look at logs to ensure there are no issues or if something needs to be changed, like code conversion, or a provider didn’t match.
  • Schedule: once you’re ready to have an import scheduled, you will use this tab. This allows for automation on a frequency of your choice. You can choose who will receive notifications that the import occurred as well as if there were any issues.
  • Channel: imports can be large and take time, so VerityStream advises having this process put in a separate channel from your medical staff reports.

You can track your data import using built-in dashboards. These dashboards can be assigned to different team members to track procedures. This allows you to see what is working and what needs to be changed to ensure performance metrics are accurate.

Planning for Imports

As you can see, a lot goes into determining the data to import and getting the data ready for import! The good news is that when you work with VerityStream, you won’t have to go at it alone. VerityStream offers resources to assist in importing patient data properly including KnowledgeNOW videos to support imports and a Patient Data Import Workbook to assist with importing clinical data. In the Workbook, you’ll also find a high-level overview of the objectives, along with the short and long-term data elements and data information that will be needed to complete patient data imports successfully.

Our team has also established key time frames for the implementation of performance measures and/or clinical solutions. Our proposed implementation timeline is as follows:

  • Week one
    • Schedule project kick-off call
    • Watch KnowledgeNow Series on Case Review
    • Schedule weekly status meetings
  • Week two
    • Review patient import maps
    • Review import matrix for specialty forms and indicators
    • Review recorded series for Case Review and Performance Metrics
    • Review instructions for specialty templates with indicators
  • Week three
    • Patient import training
    • Patient data decision: ongoing integration or as-needed basis?
  • Weeks four to six
    • Patient Q&A meetings
  • Week six
    • Complete patient data mapping

From there, we move into Week seven, the patient import test. We recommend importing 90 days of data to use as a test to ensure imports are coming in properly. This allows you to make any necessary tweaks before importing the full set of data. You will start by creating test files based on patient standard import maps, and the implementation manager will then download the report for testing. During Week eight, the clinical solutions team will hold a meeting to review the reports.

Data should be imported in a specific order:

  • Patient demographics
  • Medical record number
  • Admissions/encounters
  • Diagnosis
  • Procedures
  • Consults

Security and other recommendations

Like you, we understand the importance of keeping patient data secure, which is why CredentialStream implements the strictest of security measures. CredentialStream databases are stored in secure, encrypted, Microsoft Azure environments in Eastern US. The transmission of data is always IP- restricted, whether the data is at rest or in transit. CredentialStream keeps full backups for 30 days as well as daily differential backups, both stored in an Azure container. And there are separate environments dedicated to disaster recovery.

Other security measures include:

  • User sessions time out after defined periods of inactivity
  • All data transmitted between the client and server use TLS encryption with a 2048-bit key
  • Activity logging is performed and monitored
  • Access is available via a single sign-on or IP restriction
  • Access to areas within the application are controlled by user security and groups


As you can see, proper use of patient data is vital when it comes to analyzing clinical competency. For a more comprehensive look at this information, watch a recording of session two of our 10-part Clinical Solutions Webinar Series presentation, Leveraging Patient Information to Support Clinical Solutions Tools in CredentialStream, or reach out for a demo. As always, we’re here to help.

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