Back to Blog

Types of Background Checks for Medical Professionals

PSI Team | Industry Expertise

Types of Background Checks for Medical Professionals

A medical career is one of the most challenging, noble, and necessary professions in the world. When you hire new employees for your team, you want the best of the best. Your practice should be full of medical professionals who are qualified, responsible, and trustworthy. That’s why background checks are a key part of the healthcare industry. Your hiring process should guarantee that every candidate truly has the certifications and experience they claim to have. Background checks also help you determine which candidates you can trust to handle the valuable materials and vulnerable populations within your medical facility. All in all, safe hiring should be a priority for any practice. Help set your team up for success by implementing these types of background checks for medical professionals.

Identity Verification Check

Let’s start with the basics: you want to ensure every new hire is exactly who they say they are. Identity verification checks make sure your candidate isn’t lying about their identity. This part of the background check also determines if the rest of the information about your potential employee is accurate. Clerical errors and other mistakes happen from time to time. An identity verification check ensures your background screening targets the correct person rather than a different individual with the same name.

Comprehensive Criminal Background Check

A criminal background check should be part of any hiring process, no matter what role or industry you’re in. That said, this portion of the screening process becomes even more important in the medical field. That’s why employers should run comprehensive searches on multiple levels. A multi-state background check will pull information about any crimes that occurred at the local, county, or state levels. This type of background screening allows you to search for a criminal record in every jurisdiction in which your applicant has ever lived. However, if a crime encompasses multiple jurisdictions—as major felonies often do—it won’t show up in a multi-state background check. That’s where the federal background check comes in. This type of screening will gather records of any crimes committed at the federal level, such as fraud, embezzlement, and other white-collar crimes. Make sure you cover all of your bases by performing both multi-state and federal background checks with new hires.

National Sex Offender Search

In addition to criminal background checks, medical facilities should also include a national sex offender search in their screening process. This part of the background check pulls data from every state and U.S. territory to identify registered sex offenders, or anyone with a conviction or guilty plea of a sex crime. This search is crucial when hiring medical staff. Everyone in your practice works with children, elderly patients, and other vulnerable populations. To protect patients and foster a safe environment for everyone in your care, make sure your staff has clean records, free of any history of sexual assault or abuse. The national sex offender search should be an essential part of every hiring decision you make for your practice.

Drug Screening

Employee drug screenings are another common part of any background check, but they hold special weight in the medical industry. Your employees have access to drugs and medications, including powerful prescription drugs. Someone with a history of substance abuse can take advantage of this access. Not only does this create expenses due to the lost materials, but it can lead to serious addiction problems and other health issues for the employee in question. Also, medical professionals perform delicate and crucial work every day. An intoxicated nurse or doctor puts themselves, their coworkers, and every patient they care for in danger. You should have peace of mind about your employees’ handling of the drugs in your facility. A drug screening can help you determine which candidates may have a problem working with prescription pills and other drugs.

Employment and Education Verification

A successful medical career comes with a long list of requirements and qualifications, many of which revolve around one’s work and school experience. Employment and education verifications help ensure that candidates don’t lie about their history. It’s easy to write a prestigious medical program into your resume, but the verification process ensures that a candidate is telling the truth about where they have studied, trained, and worked. This is an important step, as it guarantees your new hire has the degree and training they need to succeed in this role. Employment verification processes will also demonstrate whether a candidate lost a previous job due to a serious mistake, such as negligence. In an industry that requires such serious qualifications, employment and education verification are a mandatory step for every new hiring decision.

Professional License Verification

Speaking of qualifications, you must ensure that your candidate isn’t lying about the certifications they possess. A professional license verification process will confirm that your potential new hire has the relevant and necessary licenses to perform their job successfully and legally. Healthcare licenses go beyond a list of qualifications. If you accidentally hire someone without the right license, you could face serious legal consequences, such as negligent hiring lawsuits. A professional license verification is one of the most valuable types of background checks for medical professionals to undergo. This part of the screening process will also bring up any restrictions on a candidate’s license, which is crucial information for you to know before you bring them onto your staff.

Federal Exclusion Search

The United States government has many federally funded programs—including Medicare—in which medical practices can participate. However, some healthcare professionals aren’t qualified to receive these funds. A criminal record or other complication can ban someone from receiving federal funding. If such a person is on your staff, it could disqualify your entire facility. That’s where the federal exclusion search comes in. This portion of the background check searches the U.S. government list of healthcare workers who are unable to receive federal funds. This information will help you make hiring decisions that protect your entire facility and program.

A successful and honorable medical practice starts with the people you hire. Here at PSI Background Screening, we will work with you to build a professional background check that covers everything you need to make smart, safe, and compliant hiring decisions. Take care of your team and the patients they work with by building a reliable hiring process today.

Types of Background Checks for Medical Professionals