Hospitals are required by law to ensure that their providers are competent and properly credentialed by state licensing boards. Credentialing ensures that only practitioners who meet certain qualifications are able to provide care for a healthcare organization. Credentialing is a form of patient protection that involves thoroughly reviewing a practitioner’s professional history. Sometimes, healthcare practitioners don’t have the appropriate credentials due to medical malpractice claims, failure to keep up with continuing education, or disciplinary actions.
Let’s say a practitioner at a healthcare facility injures a patient and it is determined that the facility hadn’t performed the credentialing process properly. If an investigation reveals that the practitioner in question had issues that could have been discovered through credentialing, the healthcare facility may be held liable for harm caused to the patient by that practitioner. This type of claim is called negligent credentialing.
Negligence is defined as conduct that falls below the standards of behavior established by law to protect people against the unreasonable risk of harm. If a healthcare organization knew or should have known that a practitioner isn’t qualified and the practitioner causes harm to a patient through an act of negligence, the healthcare organization could be held liable for negligent credentialing of the practitioner.
For example, let’s say a physician injures a patient as a result of negligence and it is determined that the healthcare facility where the physician works hadn’t verified the physician’s license. Through proper credentialing, the healthcare facility would have determined that the physician’s license was suspended and likely wouldn’t have granted the physician privileges. In this case, it would be reasonable to conclude that the hospital’s failure to properly credential the physician led to the patient’s injury.
If a healthcare organization adopts credentialing procedures and policies that don’t reflect what a reasonable hospital would do to protect patients from harm, they could also be held liable for negligent credentialing. Another potential breach of duty is failing to address issues that come up during the credentialing process. For instance, if a healthcare organization receives a verification letter with a response that is different from what is provided on a physician’s application, then there should be documentation showing how the issue was resolved.
The healthcare attorneys at Jones Law Group in Columbus, Ohio regularly consult with clients regarding negligent credentialing cases. We provide defense counsel to hospitals as well as physicians and other licensed healthcare professionals. We have worked with professionals in many different fields of healthcare, including physicians, dentists, nurse practitioners, physical and occupational therapists, nurse anesthetists, and chiropractors. We’re recognized for our commitment to excellence and our ability to secure the best possible results for each client we represent.
If you are a licensed healthcare professional or healthcare facility facing a negligent credentialing claim, turn to Jones Law Group for effective, aggressive defense. We can help prove that an unsatisfactory medical outcome was not the result of your negligence. Call (614) 545-9998 or contact us online to schedule a free initial consultation with our team.
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