Credential verification specialists make sure that all clinical employees
have the necessary training and certifications before they are hired. After
someone is hired, these specialists ensure that all staff keep current with
They collect and maintain credential data for all clinical employees whose
jobs require certification.
They check on the experience, training and references for all doctors,
nurses and other clinical staff. For example, a doctor needs a registration
for prescribing medicine. He also needs board certification, a license and
of course a medical degree.
These specialists can work in the administration departments of hospitals
or medical centers. They can also work on a contract basis.
In the private sector, credentialing services work on contract for hospitals
or health-care organizations. They obtain the necessary records and notify
clients when credentials need updating. These companies are called credential
verification organizations, or CVOs.
Good communication skills are necessary. You have to get the proper documents
from the medical personnel or credentialing agencies.
"A person should have excellent communication skills and be very tactful
and diplomatic when dealing with issues concerning physician licensing," says
Mark Sumner. He is the credentials coordinator for a hospital.
These specialists answer questions from clinical staff and department heads.
In some cases, they deal with patients needing reassurance on the qualifications
of their doctor.
You need the ability to handle many tasks at a time to work in this field.
You must remain organized, work with limited supervision and know how to minimize
The work is repetitive. But some say it can take on the feel of detective
"I found it to involve a lot of digging at times," says Cindy Carrol. She
is a former credentials manager in Naples, Florida.
"But if you know the right department to call at the CVO or medical center,
and ask the right questions, you can easily find the documents you need to
help someone have all her papers in order to be hired."
"Do not turn credentialing into routine verification assembly line work,"
cautions Sumner. "Keep each case separate and you'll find it's quite interesting
and very rewarding."
Certification records in hospitals, nursing homes, and other health-care
facilities need to be updated. Credential verification specialists update
records as certifications come up for renewal.
They may contact the physician or medical personnel for proper documentation.
Or they may work with a credentialing organization to help keep records current.
If certification records are missing or expired, the specialist will notify
the medical personnel that their records will be placed on hold until required
records are obtained.