Tips for Navigating the Physician Credentialing Process | Moonlighting Solutions

What are you looking for?

You’ve just accepted a new practice opportunity, or you’ve signed up to become a moonlighter – congratulations! Now comes the fun part: credentialing!

As a physician, you may or may not have been through this process before. Either way, you may be wondering – why does it take so much time? Why do they always need so much information? Why are there so many documents, even though we’ve been through this all before, multiple times?

The credentialing team at Moonlighting Solutions works diligently to make the process as smooth and painless as possible for physicians. Additionally, there are some ways that physicians can also help to expedite the credentialing process and prevent delays.

What does the credentialing process entail?

At Moonlighting Solutions, the Credentialing Department uses the pre-application, the provider’s CV and online research of the board websites to start a file of information that is required on a hospital application for privileges. This file of the physician's information includes but is not limited to:

  • personal info and demographics (date of birth, etc.)
  • education and training
  • work history and hospital affiliations
  • licenses and prescribing registrations
  • board certifications and any certifications from other organizations (ACLS etc)

At the same time, the Credentialing Department asks each physician for a packet of supporting documents that are required by the hospital medical staff office to process the applications. These documents include but are not limited to:

  • CV with dates in mm/yyyy format – (this formatting is very important!)
  • Education and Training program diplomas
  • ID – drivers license passport
  • Medical Licenses
  • Prescribing Registrations – federal and where applicable, state
  • Board Certificates
  • Other certificates
  • Immunization history – including MMR, Varicella, TDAP, annual flu vaccine
  • Tuberculosis history, immunization and clearance
  • Proof of recent clinical activity – procedure log or case log (this is often difficult to obtain)
  • JPG photo for file and badge
What variables can cause a potential delay in the physician credentialing process?

It is very helpful to have black and white scans of all the documents in PDF format except for the photo which should be a color jpeg file.

Delays can be caused when all the documents don’t come in with the applications or if the application was not complete. But delays aren’t only caused on the application side of things. The hospital will verify the hospital privileges and contact peer references.

A procedure log is often difficult to get. Start working on that early in the credentialing. It should list the clinical activity and procedures performed in the last 2 years.

What, if anything, can physicians do to expedite their credentialing process?

It is always best to provide more information than less early in the process. The CV should accurately reflect all hospitals where privileges have been issued and all workplaces. . It is helpful to have all medical licenses (even inactive ones) listed as well as all board certifications.

Review the application you receive and answer all sections fully and as completely as possible

If any of the ‘third parties’ like hospital affiliations or peers are slow to respond, that can be an issue. So be sure your peers know to expect one or two requests and ask them if they will have the time to complete them promptly.

Most importantly, it is best to respond to the credentialing contact’s emails and request as promptly as possible.

What else is important for physicians to know about the credentialing process?

Credentialing is, admittedly, a tedious process. But it is the way in which hospitals can be sure that they have quality providers who are who they say they are and have the experience that is required to the job. Please be patient with the process. A kind and prompt response is always appreciated even if it is just to say, you’re a little busy now but you’ll work on the request as soon as possible.

Keep your CV up to date throughout your career and maintain a file of all the documents you send.

It will be helpful for future credentialing.

If you still have questions, your Moonlighting Solutions representative will be happy to provide any additional guidance and help walk you through the process.