An entire healthcare organization can benefit when medical staff services and HR align.

A medical staff services office comprises medical staff professionals (MSPs) and credentialing specialists. They are responsible for credentialing and privileging medical staff members, keeping up with medical staff bylaws, and more.

In contrast, HR managers and employees are often responsible for promoting employee hiring and retention initiatives, managing financial matters such as payroll, and making sure healthcare regulations are followed.

Since the pandemic began, roles have been moved around within healthcare systems to fill urgent needs. Clinicians have been overworked and fatigued, and all of this disruption has affected patient safety outcomes. Preventable central-line associated bloodstream infections, for example, have risen 51% compared to pre-pandemic rates.

Dr. Christopher Duntsch, colloquially known as “Dr. Death,” botched operations on nearly three dozen people. These adverse events resulted in the deaths of two patients before criminal proceedings finally put an end to his power. With such poor outcomes, why was Duntsch allowed to operate on so many patients before intervention came?

How to Optimize the Credentialing Process for 2022 and Beyond

The COVID pandemic disrupted healthcare as we knew it. But healthcare systems are taking advantage of the pandemic-driven upheaval to accelerate changes to the way they work. According to a report from Deloitte, only 9% of healthcare employees indicated that employers were innovating new ways of working before COVID-19, compared with 78% since the pandemic began.

Medical services professionals (MSPs) are the gatekeepers of patient safety. That will never change. But everything else about the MSP role is evolving rapidly, with those adjustments accelerating exponentially during the COVID pandemic.

Medical staff services (MSS) professionals will continue to face several changes and challenges moving into 2021. Having different standards for privileging and credentialing at each healthcare facility complicates matters. Streamlining and standardizing your MSS processes could result in increased efficiency, improved patient outcomes and more consistent data across your healthcare system.

From disaster privileging to credentialing by proxy and beyond, COVID-19 has profoundly affected medical staff services professionals’ (MSSP) operations and obligations.

Many healthcare organizations adopted telemedicine for the first time during COVID-19, introducing a wave of process changes. Assessing healthcare providers’ competencies and licenses without meeting them in person was new to many, but a wider adoption of credentialing by proxy makes the process more accessible.

COVID-19 has driven an increase in temporary staffing to meet healthcare demands, and with that comes the adjusted privileging requirements of disasters and states of emergency. Typically, however, qualifying disasters are natural phenomena that might cause power outages, internet loss, or other equipment failures that make background checks difficult. COVID-19 is different.

During our current health crisis, it is even more vital that healthcare organizations blend patient-first care with operational expertise. Physician leaders are on the frontlines of the coronavirus crisis, and they’re under a lot of pressure to provide exceptional care while maintaining operational excellence.

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