Students often don’t understand why they need to undergo a background check prior to beginning clinical work. Corporate Screening offers the answers to a few of the most common questions.

Q: Why does the school require a background check?

A: In 2004, the Joint Commission passed a standard that staff, students and volunteers who work in the same capacity as staff that provide care, treatment and services obtain criminal background checks when required by law and regulation and organization policy.

Q. What exactly is a background check?

A. A background check, also known as a background investigation, is the process of looking up and compiling the criminal records and commercial records pertaining to someone. What is included in a background check for students in Allied Health programs depends on the information and needs of the clinical site, and varies by site.

In addition to a the background investigation, your school may require additional things from you. Most common are a drug screening test and documentation of your immunizations.

Q. Does anyone regulate the use of the information collected about me?

Since the information collected is of a sensitive nature, there are a number of laws that regulate what can be reported, the legal use and distribution of the information. The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) is a key piece of regulating legislation, and it provides rules and procedures regarding the use of consumer reports (background checks),adverse decisions, notification to applicants, and destruction and safekeeping of records. There are also various state laws and other standards. Importantly for students in Allied Health Programs, there is the 2004 Joint Commission standard that students and volunteers must pass the same criminal background checks as staff employees do.

 Q How long does it take to process the background check?

A. Your background check through VerifyStudents by Corporate Screening may be completed in as little as three or fewer business days. However, not all background checks are completed that quickly. In some cases, court records may take longer to access, thereby necessitating extra time. Also, some healthcare facilities may require additional information in their background check that may require more time to verify. That’s why there isn’t a specific turnaround time for all background checks.