Tips and Education
Q & A with a Credentialing Specialist
September 13, 2017
Q: What does a credentialing specialist do, and what is their purpose in my placement?
A: A credentialing specialist gathers all the required documentation to keep a traveler compliant for their assignment. Titan has certain requirements, and then each facility might have their own specific additional requirements. When we get a placement, it is a credentialing specialist’s job to make sure the requirements of both Titan and the facility are met. This can sometimes be double the work if they have to upload them into two different databases, so it’s helpful if the traveler doesn’t procrastinate and sends everything in a timely manner.
It is also the credentialing specialist’s responsibility to make sure the type of documentation meets very specific requirements. For instance, a traveler might have had a recent TB test done, but if the paperwork doesn’t show everything the facility wants to see (perhaps the physician’s signature, time read, arm placement, etc.), they might have to have another one done. It’s better to know as soon as they are placed which tests and documents they don’t have so the credentialing specialist can set them up to get them completed. Several tests have time limits or the results might take a while to come back, and we don’t want their start date to be delayed.
In addition to health records, Credentialing gathers documentation of their education (diploma), certifications (BLS and others), background checks, drug screens, employment history, and HR forms to name a few. It can be overwhelming when travelers receive emails from credentialing, because there are so many documents required. Our advice is to read the Welcome Email in its entirety, and flag it for future reference. We try to call or text travelers if something is urgent, but many times we need something signed or attached, so we advise the travelers to check their email daily, at least until the credentialing process is completed. We also urge them to please call us with questions – that is what we are here for, to make it easier on them and keep everything organized.
Your credentialing specialist will also reach out during the assignment if any of the documentation is going to be expiring. The traveler then remains in compliance while on assignment.
Q: Can I skip the credentialing process?
A: Credentialing cannot be skipped. Even if someone is a rehire that just came off another assignment for us, they still need to have certain credentials renewed. For example, they will need a new drug screen. We also keep an eye on expiring credentials. A traveler might have completed a test for us when they were originally placed, but several exams and documents need to be renewed annually. So even if you are on a current assignment, we might still contact you to complete something for us to KEEP you on that assignment.
If the credentialing process were skipped, there would be no placement. There wouldn’t be any documentation of your immunizations, health requirements as per the CDC, certifications and licenses or Joint Commissions compliance.
Q: How can I help to make the credentialing process run smoothly?
A: In order for things to run smoothly, we recommend to keep a file folder or binder with you for every assignment. Keep your medical records and copies of your diploma, certifications, etc. in here so that you will always have them if you need them. Every assignment at every facility has the same general requirements, so to save you time and money, hang on to your records. Also, check your email and voicemail daily. Some matters can be urgent, and we just need a response. Please always at least send a message back to us. For example, if we asked for a document, and you don’t have it but you are working on getting it, just let us know the status. We won’t bug you so much if we know what’s going on with you.
The best way to help credentialing go smoothly is to send all required documents as soon as they are requested. Sometimes appointments need to be set up for TB tests, titers, boosters, etc. If this is the case, please communicate this up front so we can get it done in time to start the assignment. Always ask questions if you have them. We are all here to help guide you through the credentialing process.