The Federation Credentials Verification Service (FCVS) is a permanent, lifetime portfolio of primary-source verified credentials for physicians which allows for easy and cost-effective access to medical credentials whenever they are needed. This service can lead to confusion and questions but is an important tool for medical licensing. Here, we will explain the FCVS in detail and explore its benefits and caveats.
How the FCVS Works
The FCVS is a fast and convenient way for physicians and physician assistants to store core credentials, exam scores and postgraduate training information. For those applying for licenses in multiple states simultaneously, this service is particularly useful. It is also extremely useful for physicians who attended medical school outside the United States or whose postgraduate training programs have closed. State medical boards rely on this centralized, uniform repository where they can obtain primary-source verified education information for those applying for licensure. In theory, physicians who have an FCVS profile should be able to save time when applying for a medical license; however, this is not always the case.
FCVS Details Every Physician or PA Should Know
First, it is important to understand that the core credentials stored within an FCVS profile are limited to medical school information, identity information (passport and/or birth certificate), exam scores and postgraduate training information. It does not include many other state-required items such as profiles, license verifications, employment verification, malpractice/adverse action documentation and many other documents. Clients of MLG are able to trust that our services pick up where the FCVS drops off by securely keeping this supplementary information on-hand for new medical license applications.
Many physicians are surprised to learn that the FCVS will not house all of the information that is typically required to apply for a medical license. They are also often surprised by the length of the FCVS application process
Average Processing Time for FCVS Applications
It is wrong to assume that having an FCVS profile will expedite your medical licensure process. The average processing time for initial applications using FCVS profiles is 45 days or less. For subsequent applications, processing time lasts for an average of 20 days. Keep in mind that not all states require or even accept FCVS profiles. For more information on which states require or participate in accepting FCVS profiles, click here.
Pitfalls to Avoid in Setting Up Your FCVS Profile
Setting up your FCVS profile can be tricky. The FCVS is not always successful in obtaining international medical school records, in which case, the responsibility falls to the physician to either assist the FCVS in obtaining those records or approving the FCVS profile in being deemed complete minus the medical school records. In these situations, the state medical board may still require direct-source verification of the medical education. We find that many physicians unwittingly approve their incomplete FCVS profile only to later learn that they are responsible for verifying their international credentials to individual state boards. This is often frustrating considering the purpose of the FCVS is to avoid these types of inconveniences.
You should consider the nuances of each state in which you intend to hold a medical license before deciding if setting up an FCVS profile is worth the time and effort. For example, California is a state that accepts an FCVS profile but will still require their state-specific forms to be sent to the medical school and postgraduate training program(s), making use of the FCVS pointless for physicians. This type of information is not always readily accessible to physicians online, but our licensing specialists are extremely familiar with the intricacies of the FCVS and can help you determine if it is an appropriate resource for your individual situation. Call us to determine if the FCVS is right for you.
How MLG Can Help With FCVS Profiles
The FCVS is typically useful and can be a help to busy physicians who can benefit from a lifetime portfolio of primary-source verified credentials for state medical licensure, hospital privileges, provider networks and employment and professional memberships. Populating your FCVS profile can be frustrating and time-consuming, but we can help. As a client of MLG, your dedicated licensing specialist can help set up your FCVS profile and ensure your profile information remains updated.
Call 850.433.4600 today to find out more about whether an FCVS profile is right for you and how we can help to expedite your profile setup.