Guest blog post by Linda Van Winkle, Director of Product Management at SkillSurvey

Think you need to be Sherlock Holmes to find the best credentialing automation for your medical facility? Nah. But it is a good idea to have important questions at hand to ask vendors when you’re investigating different solutions.

After all, automating the peer referencing process will help you get the information you need faster than ever before – in an average of 4 to 5 days if you use a system that’s cloud-based and completely paperless (links to online forms rather than faxes or sending via overnight or snail mail). That’s positively revolutionary because, across the industry, the average wait time for paper-based systems is currently 4 to 5 weeks!

When you use an automated system, you also boost your ability to collect the right information. And that means your facility makes the best decisions when hiring a qualified doctor. Ultimately, that means happy patients, more revenue – and no lawsuits.

Our Favorite Sourcing Questions

To help you get the ball rolling when sourcing for credentialing automation, we came up with some basic questions to ask vendors:

1. Does the solution allow you to email a link to peer references? Sending faxes or emailing documents as attachments is so last century. Make it easy to get what you need – via a simple click to an online form.

2. Are peer references able to submit information online from any device including a smart phone? Let’s face it, people are glued to their phones and tablets these days … so isn’t it smart to pick a system that users can access when they’re away from the office?

3. Does the solution provide online error checking to ensure peer references are complete? This is the ultimate way to prevent delays and repeated requests for information. Now, mistakes and omissions can be found before the peer reference clicks “send.”

4. Can peer references input electronic signatures to ensure authenticity? Instead of printing documents out, signing them and then scanning to email back to you, the peer reference can put their electronic signature on their documents – and that saves loads of time.

5. Does the solution automatically send reminders to those who haven’t responded? Hooray; no more need to schedule regular, manual reminders for slow pokes. Enough said!

Excited about credentialing the speedy, efficient and paperless way? Read more about how you can transform credentialing, improve patient care and protect your hospital from damaging lawsuits in our new white paper Credentialing – End the Waiting Game, Adopt New, Mobile Technology.

Linda Van Winkle is Director of Product Management at SkillSurvey. Prior to SkillSurvey Linda was Manager of Medical Staff Services at CHRISTUS St. Patrick Hospital in Lake Charles, Louisiana. Ms. Van Winkle developed a credentials verification organization, CHRISTUS Credentials Plus that achieved CVO certification status by the NCQA. She achieved CPMSM and CPCS certification and is a member of the National Association of Medical Staff Services.

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