Credentialing process is a necessary evil every physician has to go through. Postponed or done haphazardly until a month before a physician starts working, it can turn into scheduling nightmares, cash-flow delays, and other unpleasant things. Fortunately, there are several steps to minimize the possible issues with credentialing. The following steps are quite simple, yet proven.
Start well in advance
Though an average credentialing process can be finished within 90 days, give yourself at least 6 months. As payers have supersized, an ability to expedite an application has disappeared. Physicians have to work on a timeline of someone else, usually payers, and each payer has different timelines for processing an application. So, be patient and wait.
Pay a lot of attention
Credentialing managers say that the most common mistake in applications is that they miss information that’s crucial for processing. Outdated, incomplete, or missing data usually appears in the following fields:
• malpractice insurance
• hospital privileges
• current work status and work history
If you provide a comprehensive list of your training, education, experience, etc., you will probably avoid the vast majority of delays. Getting everything right the first time means you’ll get a new physician credentialed within 90 days.
Get yourself acquainted with CAQH
CAQH, or the Coalition for Affordable Quality Healthcare, created a uniform credentialing program 15 years ago. Since then, many payer across the country gave adopted the program. Physicians who update and attest with it find credentialing and re-credentialing processes much easier and faster. CAQH doesn’t allow you to follow temptation and leave data entry boxes empty or send an incomplete application. It’s important, because applications with missing information are simply rejected. Because credentialing decisions take months, you’ll lose a lot of time and have to do a lot quickly. So, with CAQH you’ll attach all required documents and provide all information. And never try to simply remember important dates and events – always have your documents with you.
Link a start date of a physician
This can be a bit controversial, since many hospitals are afraid of offending a new physician by asking to submit the requisite credentialing paperwork. However, it’s quite comfortable to link a start date to the submission of the paperwork. For example, the date might be at least 3 months away. It’s better for both hospitals and physicians, who at least will know a preliminary schedule of the credentialing process.
Know all regulations and laws
Different states have different laws for credentialing, including in-state credentialing (a physician change one practice to another within one state doesn’t have to go through all credentialing process again), and reciprocity regulations (if a physician was credentialed in another state, sometimes he/she will have to repeat the process). Usually contacting local medical society or association is enough to get all necessary information, avoid mistakes and use laws to your advantage.
Credentialing can be tedious, especially if you don’t provide enough information from the very beginning. Hospitals make strong efforts to gather all data from new physicians, and when done properly, credentialing is a much less painful than it might be otherwise.
Premier Credentialing Solutions, LLC has the best credentialing and licensing solutions for you and your business; We proudly offer Provider Enrollment & Physician Credentialing, Medicare – Provider Enrollment & Revalidation, Medical Licensure Services, and Full-Service Credentialing For Billers / Billing Companies. Call (800) 455-4773 for a free, no-obligation consultation.
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