Department of Health and Human Services

Office of Inspector General -- AUDIT

"Credentialing and Privileging Practices at IHS Blackfeet Community Hospital," (A-07-03-00152)

June 13, 2005

Complete Text of Report is available in PDF format (247 kb). Copies can also be obtained by contacting the Office of Public Affairs at 202-619-1343.


Our objective was to determine whether Blackfeet Community Hospital located in Browning, Montana had completed the credentialing, privileging, and personnel suitability reviews for its medical practitioners.  For more than half of the practitioners tested, we found that the hospital did not perform a complete credentialing review or initiate the required personnel suitability review.  The hospital did not verify the credentials of 55 percent of the sampled practitioners before they provided patient care, did not issue current privileges for six percent, and did not have information indicating that it had requested background investigations from the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) for 52 percent of practitioners.

We recommended that IHS direct Blackfeet Community Hospital to: (1) take action necessary to ensure the credentialing and privileging reviews are completed in a timely manner, and (2) initiate the required OPM background investigations for its practitioners.  In written comments, IHS stated that all recommended corrected actions had been taken.