National Association Medical Staff Services Awareness Week

National Association Medical Staff Services Awareness Week

Nov 8, 2018
  • Author:
    Vicki Searcy
    Former VP, Consulting
    Vicki has managed several credentialing and privileging practices, led a national healthcare accreditation and compliance consulting practice, was a surveyor for the NCQA, and a former president of NAMSS.

This Profession

The NAMSS mission statement. Medical services professionals (MSPs) are the gatekeepers of patient safety in healthcare organizations nationwide.


I am certain that this mission statement speaks eloquently to all of us. We are not just paper-pushers (and hopefully, the paper has been eliminated or greatly diminished!). The work that we do in credentialing and privileging is the foundation of keeping our patients safe by ensuring that excellent credentialing methods are implemented in our organizations.

Our Collective Accomplishments


When I think about collective accomplishments, I think about how NAMSS and its members have had impact on the healthcare industry and have had positive impact on patient safety. Here are some of my thoughts.


  1. 1.    NAMSS is “at the table” when there are important national discussions related to credentialing. This has taken years of work by the leadership of NAMSS – in the past, we were often overlooked. Kudos to the effort that it has taken to make the healthcare industry recognize the impact of NAMSS and its members!


    I was at a meeting last week at a healthcare system conference, comprised of 45+ hospitals, where the influence of the MSPs was clearly acknowledged. This healthcare system seeks to continue to standardize credentialing practices and data acquisition from healthcare providers and knows that the way to do this is via the medical staff office/credentialing departments.


  2. 2.    There is an acknowledged scope of knowledge to work in medical staff services. The NAMSS education and certification programs have defined the knowledge required and NAMSS certification is widely recognized and is very often a prerequisite for employment.


  3. 3.    There is movement towards standardization and inclusion of other related processes (enrollment, recruiting, etc.) into the scope of services of the department responsible for credentialing. The ability of MSPs to establish and implement effective processes has been recognized and very often leads to expansion of departmental responsibilities.


  4. 4.    The job titles that NAMSS members now have has transitioned over the years from largely clerical titles (in the beginning) to middle and now upper management. It is not uncommon for health systems to establish vice president positions.

Our Individual Accomplishments

I didn’t know when I started work in a hospital how fortunate I was going to be to discover the world of medical staff services – and the profession that has been so professionally rewarding for the past 30 plus years. I treasure friendships that I have made as a result of NAMSS and also the opportunities that I have had to serve in NAMSS leadership positions.


I hope that your professional journey is equally fulfilling and wish you the very best as you continue to do the work that helps keep patients safe.


Thanks for reading and Happy NAMSS Week!