What is the FCVS?
The Federation Credentials Verification Service (FCVS) is a service of the Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB) and was established in September 1996 to provide a centralized process for medical boards to obtain a verified, primary source record of an applicant’s core credentials. This service was designed to lighten the workload of credentialing staff and reduce duplication of effort by gathering, verifying and permanently storing the physician’s credentials in a central repository at the FSMB’s offices. This repository of information allows a physician to establish a confidential, lifetime professional portfolio with FCVS, which can be forwarded, at the physician’s request, to any state medical board that has established an agreement with FCVS, hospital, health care or any other entity.
What the FCVS does verify:
- Medical Education
- Post Graduate Training
- Board certification
- Applicant identity
- Board Action history
- ECFMG (if applicable)
What the FCVS does NOT verify:
- Hospital Privileges
- Employment History
- License verifications
- AMA/AOA profiles
- NDPB reports & other queries
- Medical Society verifications
- Disciplinary or Malpractice history
Who should use the FCVS and how it can help you
Use the FCVS for states in which it is required. Click here for a complete list. If you are a Foreign Medical Graduate and obtaining verification from your medical school proves difficult, having your medical education verified in a lifetime repository is highly beneficial. Submitting a new application to the FCVS or requesting a subsequent profile (once you have a profile established) can take less time than acquiring the verification from your school on your own.
When NOT to use the FCVS
The FCVS process can add extra time to your licensure process. FCVS’s processing time on any file is dependent in large part on the response rate of the institutions from which the FSMB requests the verifications or credentials. There are also extra application or subsequent profile fees that the FCVS charges. On occasion, the FCVS must re-verify credentials, adding even more time to the process. And, the FCVS does not verify many of the credentials required by medical boards to complete the licensure process. Generally, if you are a US or Canadian trained physician and the state in which you seek licensure does not require the FCVS, save yourself the time & money by excluding this extra step from the process. Several medical boards do not accept the FCVS profile. Click here for a complete list.
Fees associated with the service
There will be additional application fees charged by the FCVS to establish a profile or to order a subsequent profile to your designated recipient. PLS does not charge an extra fee to complete & follow up on the FCVS application for you as long as it coincides with an existing license order, regardless of whether FCVS is required by the state in question.
PLS & the FCVS: Our relationship
Physician Licensing Service does not compete with the FCVS; we work with them. PLS has a collegial relationship with the FCVS & many of its analysts with whom we cooperatively work & coordinate the successful completion of your profile. We provide them with accurate information and assist, when possible, in helping them complete your profile in a timely manner. We understand that the FCVS is required for certain states and yet our role in that state’s process is still vital. We appreciate that the FCVS profile can often solve the laborious task of verifying foreign medical education for our physicians and can drastically reduce time in the licensure process in some instances. The FCVS cannot & does not handle the entire verification process for you as they do not verify many of the required credentials needed for licensure. They don’t complete applications for you. They don’t follow up with the boards on your behalf. They simply verify your core credentials to store in a lifetime repository. We recognize when the FCVS must be used and when it should be used, which never negates our involvement from the licensure process. For your benefit, we also discern when it might be to your detriment. Regardless of whether an FCVS profile is required for a particular state, we will complete & follow up on your FCVS application at no charge as long as it coincides with an existing license order. This complimentary service is exclusive to Physician Licensing Service.
Things you should know before applying for an FCVS profile on your own
- FCVS can be a good option if you are an International Medical Graduate where verification of your medical education can be difficult.
- The FCVS process is detailed and lengthy.
- Errors and omissions can quickly double the paperwork and triple the time it takes to establish your profile. Be detailed and specific when providing the requested information.
- FCVS will not expedite most application processes.
- Establishing an FCVS profile will double your paperwork.
- In addition to the state application you will also be required to complete an 11 page application and supporting documents.
- With FCVS you trade paperwork for verifications.
- The FCVS is a partial service. Even if the state medical boards will accept the FCVS you will still need to complete the board’s application and verify additional documents such as: Clinical Clerkships (for international graduates), Hospital Privileges, Employment, Reference Letters, AMA and AOA profiles, NPDB Databank Queries, License Verifications, Medical Society Verifications, DD214 Military Discharge, Claims History Reports and Malpractice Documentation
- Establishing a profile should be treated like a full medical license process and you should allow at least 3 months (6 months if you completed your medical education outside the U.S. or Canada) to completing the process.
- If the FCVS is having difficulties in verifying your credentials, they will leave it up to you to get the end result. You are required to follow up on many of the verifications required to set up your profile. FCVS will make three attempts to gather the required information. After that, it’s up to you.
- You must complete an eleven page application (this is in addition to the state board application and forms) in order to establish a profile.
- The fee is $295 plus expenses.
Determine if you are a Good Candidate for establishing an FCVS Profile
|American Medical Graduate||International Medical Graduate|
|States Requiring Use of FCVS||Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, New Hampshire, Ohio, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Utah, Nevada (D.O. only), North Carolina (only if profile is already established), Wyoming, & The Virgin Islands||Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, New Hampshire, Ohio, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Utah, New York, North Carolina, Wyoming, & The Virgin Islands|
|Verifications Included in an FCVS Profile||1. Identity -You provide an original birth certificate or original passport. 2. Medical education -Certified Diploma -Board form -Transcripts -Translations (if applicable) 3. Post-Graduate Training Verification 4. Exam Scores 5. Federation Disciplinary Inquiry||1. Identity -You provide an original birth certificate or original passport. 2. Medical education -Certified Diploma -Board form -Transcripts -Translations (if applicable) 3. Post-Graduate Training Verification 4. Exam Scores 5. Federation Disciplinary Inquiry 6. ECFMG|
|Boards that do not accept FCVS||Nebraska, Arkansas, Puerto Rico, Northern Mariana Islands, & Pennsylvania Osteopathic Board.|
|Who Benefits Most From Establishing an FCVS Profile||FCVS can be a great option if you are an International medical school graduate where verification of your medical education can be lengthy, time-consuming and expensive. (This is the primary benefit for establishing a profile)
Physicians applying for five or more licenses at one time (without the assistance of a licensing agency).
|Application Fee||American Medical Graduate: Initial Profile: $350-$450 American Medical Graduate: Subsequent Profile: $160 International Medical Graduate: Initial Profile: $450-$550 International Medical Graduate: Subsequent Profile: $165 * vs. PLS obtaining verifications – $85-$140, 14 days faster|
|How Long Will it Take?||FCVS’s processing time on any file is dependent in large part on the response rate of the institutions from which the FSMB requests the verifications or credentials.|
|When Should You Apply?||Apply early. If you are applying for a state license using the FCVS, apply at least 6 months in advance to avoid delays.|
|What You Can Expect||You will be required to submit either an on-line application or a paper version can be downloaded. In addition to submitting an application and fee you will also be required to submit the following:
Your file will be reviewed & you will be notified in writing of any missing information. Once your file is complete (including all verifications) your file goes to secondary review through Quality Assurance (QA). After clearing QA, your profile will be sent to your designated medical board.
|What FCVS does NOT do:||
-State License Verifications -AMA or AOA profiles -NPDB Reports -Hospital Privilege Verifications -Employment Verifications -Reference Letters -Malpractice or Disciplinary Documents -Claims History -Provide explanation documents (irregularities)
All information is provided for informational purposes only, and is subject to change without notice. For more information and details on the FCVS visit www.fsmb.org
The FCVS provides a valuable service to International Medical Graduates where verification is often time-consuming and difficult. The FCVS can also add value to physicians who do not mind completing paperwork, but like the idea of eliminating some letter writing and follow-up phone calls. There are states that accept FCVS and require very little additional verification above and beyond what the FCVS submits. These states will be heavy on the front end paperwork; however, an established FCVS profile can save you on the back end verification process.