How COVID complicates credential tracking and what you can do to remain compliant
It seems like eons since the first case of COVID appeared in the U.S. even though it was only January. Since, we’ve been on a bit of roller coaster ride, as states have experienced peaks in cases, hospitalizations and deaths. While some locations are experiencing downward trends, or at least remaining steady in all three areas, others are seeing a second surge, and many states are tightening restrictions and facing further shutdowns.
To help manage the public health threat, states loosened mandates on nurse credentialing and licensing. Response has varied by state, including waiving state requirements and regulations for RNs, LPNs and NPs so those who held unrestricted licenses within a specific time frame could temporarily reactivate their licenses without taking any test or paying fees. Additionally, healthcare professionals have been permitted to work in a state without being required to obtain a license in that state.
For some organizations, volunteers from other states, students, retirees or others who left the profession are working again, alongside existing staff, They all have different licensing and credential requirements and expiration dates.
Realities of licensing testing also complicate matters
Adding to the challenge is that many healthcare licensing testing sites are temporarily closed, and of those that are open, many are operating at half the capacity. Others have switched to an electronic format. For many employees, especially those in areas with limited testing sites or for those who don’t have easy access to the internet or a PC, scheduling a certification or recertification can be difficult, if not impossible.
Tracking licenses and credentials has become more complicated than ever
Regulations and licensing testing challenges are part of the problem. The other is simply prioritization. Many organizations have been in survival mode, doing whatever it takes to care for patients. It’s easy to forget about your CPR recertification, for example, when you are fighting to save people’s lives.
For organizational leaders and managers, it’s a troublesome situation. Because while some requirements in your state may be waived now and for the short term, at some point, those mandates will tighten again and you’ll need the visibility and intelligence to ensure everyone is up to date as quickly as possible or face costly penalties.
Reduce compliance concerns with Inovalon
With Inovalon’s credential tracking solution, ABILITY SMARTFORCE® Credentialer, you and your staff can organize licenses, certifications and in-services in one secure, intuitive dashboard.
Plus, both you and staff members will receive alerts when a certification is up for renewal, so you dramatically decrease the number of lapsed credentials in your organization.
With ABILITY SMARTFORCE Credentialer, you can easily track these vital certifications:
- State licenses
- Registered Nurse (RN)
- Certified Nursing Assistant (CAN)
- Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN)
- Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN)
- Advance Cardiac Life Support (ACLS)
- Basic Life Support (BLS)
- Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS)
- Neonatal Resuscitation Program (NRP)
- Handle With Care (Behavioral Management System on how to care for patients with autism and behavioral challenges)
- N95 mask fitting
- Tuberculosis test
- Flu test
- Driver’s license
- New CMS COVID training
If you want to prevent lapsed credentials, we can help. Don’t wait until the mandates tighten to find that you aren’t in compliance. Gain the visibility and intelligence you need now to keep staffing credentials current. Learn more about the highly affordable Credential Management or see it for yourself by signing up for a free demo.
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