Vol. 32 Iss. 22 - June 27, 2016



Agency Decision

Title of Regulation: 12VAC5-408. Certificate of Quality Assurance of Managed Care Health Insurance Plan Licensees.

Statutory Authority: § 32.1-137.1 of the Code of Virginia.

Name of Petitioner: The Medical Society of Virginia.

Nature of Petitioner's Request: The Medical Society of Virginia (MSV) respectfully submits a petition for rulemaking, per § 2.2-4007 of the Code of Virginia, on behalf of our nearly 11,000 members. The Medical Society of Virginia represents physician, medical student and physician assistant members and aims to make Virginia the best place to practice and receive medical care.

Specifically, MSV proposes amending 12VAC5-408-170: Provider credentialing and recredentialing. The purpose of these suggested changes is to update and streamline the credentialing and recredentialing process. Many physicians have expressed concern over the current process, as it takes significant time and resources away from delivering care to patients. MSV has engaged with key stakeholders including several health plans on this topic and have mutually agreed upon the proposed changes. As such, we hope the agency will consider these proposed changes eligible for the fast-track regulatory process.

MSV appreciates the department's consideration of this request and looks forward to our continued work together to make Virginia the healthiest state in the nation.

MSV proposed changes to Provider Credentialing and Recredentialing:

12VAC5-408-170. Provider Credentialing and Recredentialing.

A. The MCHIP licensee shall establish and maintain a comprehensive credentialing verification program to ensure its providers meet the minimum standards of professional licensure or certification. Written supporting documentation for providers who have completed their residency or fellowship requirements for their specialty area more than 12 months prior to the credentialing decision shall include:

1. Current valid license and history of licensure or certification;

2. Status of hospital privileges, if applicable;

3. Valid DEA certificate, if applicable;

4. Information from the National Practitioner Data Bank, as available;

5. Education and training, including post graduate training, if applicable;

6. Specialty board certification status, if applicable;

7. Practice or work history covering at least the past five years; and

8. Current, adequate malpractice insurance and malpractice history of at least the past five years.

B. The MCHIP licensee may grant provisional credentialing for providers who have completed their residency or fellowship requirements for their specialty area within 12 months prior to the credentialing decision. Written supporting documentation necessary to provisionally credential a practitioner shall include:

1. Primary source verification of a current, valid license to practice prior to granting the provisional status;

2. Written confirmation of the past five years of malpractice claims or settlements, or both, from the malpractice carrier or the results of the National Practitioner Data Bank query prior to granting provisional status; and

3. A completed application and signed attestation.

C. Providers provisionally credentialed may remain so for 60 calendar days.

D. Policies for credentialing and recredentialing shall include:

1. Criteria used to credential and recredential;

2. Process used to make credentialing and recredentialing decisions;

3. Type of providers, including network providers, covered under the credentialing and recredentialing policies;

4. Process for notifying providers of information obtained that varies substantially from the information provided by the provider;

5. Process for receiving input from participating providers to make recommendations regarding the credentialing and recredentialing process; and

6. Process and timeframes for communicating credentialing application receipt, progress and decisions to the primary credentialing contact at the address, either electronic or physical, listed on the credentialing application; and

6. 7. A requirement that the MCHIP licensee notify the applicant or his designee if permission is granted by the applicant within 60 calendar days of receipt of an application if information is missing or if there are other deficiencies in the application. The MCHIP licensee shall complete the credentialing process within 90 calendar days of the receipt of a complete and accurate application all such information requested by the MCHIP licensee or, if information is not requested from the applicant, within 120 calendar days of receipt of an application. The department may impose administrative sanctions upon an MCHIP licensee for failure to complete the credentialing process as provided herein if it finds that such failure occurs with such frequency as to constitute a general business practice. The current policies shall be made available to participating providers and applicants upon written request via publication on the MCHIP licensee's website or within the licensee's provider manual.

E. A provider fully credentialed by an MCHIP licensee, who changes his place of employment or his nonMCHIP licensee employer, shall, if within 60 calendar days of such change and if practicing within the same specialty, continue to be credentialed by that MCHIP licensee upon receipt by the MCHIP licensee of the following:

1. The effective date of the change;

2. The new tax ID number and copy of W-9, as applicable;

3. The name of the new practice, contact person, address, telephone and fax numbers; and

4. Other such information as may materially differ from the most recently completed credentialing application submitted by the provider to the MCHIP licensee. This provision shall not apply if the provider's prior place of employment or employer had been delegated credentialing responsibility by the MCHIP licensee. Nothing in this section shall be construed to require an MCHIP licensee to contract or recontract with a provider.

F. The appropriate credentialing process applicant shall be considered to be participating with the MCHIP licensee on the effective date which, for the purposes of this section, is the date of credentialing committee approval or the date the applicant executes a contract with the MCHIP licensee as an individual or is subject to be governed by an existing contract with the MCHIP licensee, whichever occurs later. If credentialing provides information about the malpractice insurance and if that insurance is not effective until after these dates, the effective date will be the effective date of the malpractice insurance. Beginning on the effective date the provider shall be obligated to the terms and conditions of the contract and shall be entitled to be paid as a participating provider pursuant to the terms of the contract. The MCHIP licensee shall notify the applicant and the primary credentialing contact of the effective date in a reasonable timeframe; in the event of a negative decision, the communication will include instructions for appeal, if any.

completed before the provider:

1. Begins seeing covered persons;

2. Enters into the employment or contractual relationship with the MCHIP licensee; and

3. Is included in the listing of health care providers as a participating provider in any marketing and covered person materials.

G. The providers shall be recredentialed at least every three years. Recredentialing documentation shall include:

1. Current valid license or certification;

2. Status of hospital privileges, if applicable;

3. Current valid DEA registration, if applicable;

4. Specialty board eligibility or certification status, if applicable;

5. Data from covered person complaints and the results of quality reviews, utilization management reviews and covered persons satisfaction surveys, as applicable; and

6. Current, adequate malpractice insurance and history of malpractice claims and professional liability claims resulting in settlements or judgments.

H. All information obtained in the credentialing process shall be subject to review and correction of any erroneous information by the health care provider whose credentials are being reviewed. Nothing in the previous sentence shall require an MCHIP or MCHIP licensee to disclose to a provider, or any other person or party, information or documents: (i) that the MCHIP or the MCHIP licensee, itself, develops or causes to be developed as part of the MCHIP's credentialing process or (ii) that are privileged under applicable law. The department may require the MCHIP licensee to provide a copy of its credentialing policies.

I. Providers shall be required by the MCHIP licensee to notify the MCHIP of any changes in the status of any credentialing criteria.

J. The MCHIP licensee shall not refuse to initially credential or refuse to reverify the credentials of a health care provider solely because the provider treats a substantial number of patients who require expensive or uncompensated care.

K. The MCHIP licensee shall have policies and procedures for altering the conditions of the provider's participation with the MCHIP licensee. The policies shall include actions to be taken to improve performance prior to termination and an appeals process for instances when the MCHIP licensee chooses to alter the condition of provider participation based on issues of quality of care or service, except in circumstances where an covered person's health has been jeopardized. Providers shall have complete and timely access to all data and information used by the licensee to identify or determine the need for altering the conditions of participation.

L. The MCHIP licensee shall retain the right to approve new providers and sites based on quality issues, and to terminate or suspend individual providers. Termination or suspension of individual providers for quality of care considerations shall be supported by documented records of noncompliance with specific MCHIP expectations and requirements for providers. The provider shall have a prescribed system of appeal of this decision available to them as prescribed in the contract between the MCHIP or its delegated service entity and the provider.

M. Providers shall be informed of the appeals process. Profession specific providers actively participating in the MCHIP plan shall be included in reviewing appeals and making recommendations for action.

N. The MCHIP licensee shall notify appropriate authorities when a provider's application or contract is suspended or terminated because of quality deficiencies by the health care provider whose credentials are being reviewed.

O. There shall be an organized system to manage and protect the confidentiality of personnel files and records. Records and documents relating to a provider's credentialing application shall be retained for at least seven years.

Agency Decision: Request granted.

Statement of Reason for Decision: The Virginia Department of Health will prepare and submit a Notice of Intended Regulatory Action.

Agency Contact: Erik Bodin, Director, Office of Licensure and Certification, Department of Health, 9960 Mayland Drive, Suite 401, Richmond, VA 23233, telephone (804) 367-2102, or email

VA.R. Doc. No. R16-13; Filed June 3, 2016, 3:12 p.m.