Medical Affairs for your Telepsychiatry Program
The credentialing process is complex for any provider, but adapting it for telepsychiatry adds new layers. Medical Affairs should be looped in as early as possible when considering telepsychiatry. Start by reviewing your organizations bylaws to see if any need to be modified to accommodate remote providers. For example, a provider who will never be onsite at your organization likely will not be required to give a PPD test or asked to memorize where the fire exits are located in your building. For telepsychiatry organizations that work with a CVO, there is often the opportunity to accept credentials for telepsychiatry providers “by proxy.”
Most telepsychiatry programs undergo a credentialing process with the telemedicine provider and each site they plan to serve. This could include licensure, facility privileges and payer enrollment. Depending on a providers’ individual situation, credentialing can stretch out over multiple months and can feel a bit arduous and redundant but it is an important step in making sure appropriate care is being delivered.