Donna’s Question of the Week – Hospital Committees

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Committees are great to have in an organization. When effective, they include a strong leader as a chair, meet at the right frequency, include the right people, have a clear agenda, promote pointed discussions, and take definitive actions. One of the most important committee meetings that is supported by MSPs is the Credentials Committee. This committee has had a long history of including as its members physicians only. Change is upon us and this is another area where reinventing the Credentials Committee with a refined purpose, composition, and accountabilities are is critical to meet the changes in healthcare as well as adapting to the changing culture in your organization.

One of my most recent postings on LinkedIn generated many opinions about membership on MEC and Credentials Committees. It also offered provocative ideas on inclusions to these committees. Read below to learn how your colleagues have facilitated the addition of new members while respecting the valuable input of physicians.

MSP QUESTION OF THE WHEE: Credentials Committee Memberships

“Does your Credentials Committee membership include any Podiatrists, Nurse Practitioners, Physician Assistants, Allied Health Professionals, or any other professionals that you consider a non-traditional member?”

I had a wide range of responses!

I had a wide range of responses! See them below.

“Our committee consists of MDs and DOs only from a range of specialists.”

-Jennifer G., CPMSM

 “My facility’s credentials committee consists of mostly physicians but also has legal representation, risk management representation, the director of quality management, the director of nurse training, one PA, and medical staff office personnel.”

-Laura Seller, MBA

“My facility’s credentials committee consists of the five most recent Chiefs of Staff and has representation from administration and CEO. The meeting is facilitated by my credentialing specialist and on occasion I will attend to address a major issue that may have arisen.”

-Juanita Howell, Director Medical Staff Services at Grays Harbor Community Hospital

“Our committee consists of 6 physicians representing a department each. Because we require the CNO to sign off on any APRNs, she also sits on the committee as well as our COO, Quality, Risk, and MSO.”

-Debi Potter, Director, Medical Staff Services at Montgomery Regional Hospital

“We have 7 members of the credentials committee from various fields of practice. Most of the members have been doing credentials for many years and don’t rotate off. This is very helpful because they know the files as well as the MSO. Also, on the committee is the COO, CEO, CNO, Quality Director and Risk Manager. They don’t have a vote but are there for sharing of information. No AHPs are on any of the medical staff committees.”

-Kathy Spiers

“Our credentials committee consists of physicians only.”

-Karyn Delgado, Manager Medical Staff Services at Saint Joseph Regional Medical Center

“No. Physicians only.”

-Christian Franklin, Medical Staff Services Coordinator at Princeton Baptist Medical Center.

“We have one registered nurse who is a member on the Credentialing and Privileging Committee. The rest of the members are all physicians (MDs) and I am the coordinator of the committee.”

-Diana El Banna, Medical Staff Officer at American University of Beirut Medical Center

“The Credentials Committee may well be limited to the Medical Staff members only, so depending on state law, non-traditionals may not be on the Medical Staff.”

-Elizabeth “Libby” Snelson, Legal Counsel for the Medical Staff PLLC

“Our Credentials Committee and MEC include podiatrists and at least one nurse practitioner.”

-Ellen Andrew, Credentialing Specialist at the Austin Diagnostic Clinic

“Our committee consists of MDs and DOs only from a range of specialists.”

-Jennifer G., CPMSM

So how are your committees set up? Feel free to shout out on my Facebook page, Twitter, or LinkedIn. I look forward to hearing your responses!

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