When we suffer from an illness, we seek help from medical professionals or doctors. We put our lives in the hands of these professionals in the case of a health issue. But what if you found out that most of doctors are unreliable?

Something similar has been doing rounds in India in the past few years. The healthcare industry serves humans when they need medical assistance. Fraudulent cases in the industry have come to the forefront, posing threats not only to the entire profession but also human lives. The exposure to risk through frauds and crimes on the part of these professionals has triggered the importance of background checks in healthcare. It is not that recruiters in the industry do not screen employees while hiring. But, with several lives and the reputation of medical professionals at stake, the industry is realising the importance of having a reliable screening process.

So, what incidents prompted the need for background checks in healthcare and how will the process help?

Problems in the Healthcare Industry – Fake Medical Professionals and Scams

The Indian healthcare industry has never been so prone to risks as it is today – the risk of losing stature of reputed professionals and organisations, the risk of losing human faith, and the risk of losing business. Similar to other professions, the healthcare industry is bombarded with forged educational degrees and employment certificates every year. Desperate job seekers source fake degrees and experience letters for a few bucks and play with the lives of people by posing as medical professionals.

A survey by the World Health Organisation, as reported in The Hindu, said that almost 31% of allopathic doctors in India were educated only up to secondary school level and 57% did not have any medical qualification. The scenario was worse in rural India with only 18.8% allopathic doctors having a medical qualification. Although the study was based on the 2001 census, the situation has only worsened in the last few years.

Recently, the Hindustan Times reported the capture of three fake doctors in state-run health care units in Kolkata. Out of the three caught, two had produced fake MBBS degrees and the other got the job without providing any documents. These so-called doctors treated patients for years before being caught, in fact, one of them also worked in a well-known corporate hospital. The Criminal Investigation Department (CID) working on the case estimates that there are around 20-50 such professionals in the state. They also suspect several health department officials, medical college employees, and doctors to be involved in the racket. Such officials and employees take advantage of desperate job seekers and the loopholes in the recruitment system to giveaway forged documents for a few bucks. This is not all. A kidney transplant scam at a reputed Mumbai hospital and a hysterectomy scam in Bengaluru were reported by the Times of India a few months back. The kidney scam case found discrepancies in the documents of donors and recipients. In the Bengaluru-based case, several women were cheated by doctors and forced to undergo a hysterectomy which led to complications for them. While this was about doctors, frauds are committed by people of all ranks in the healthcare industry.

Due to the lack of a reliable screening process and a strong recruitment system, these so-called professionals threaten the reputation of the entire medical industry. Implementing a comprehensive screening process can help build trust and make the industry great again.

How Can Background Checks in Healthcare Help?

With every ailing person putting their faith in you, as a healthcare professional, it is your duty to provide and maintain best practices. Although employee verification is prevalent in most medical organisations, there are some that either do basic reference checks or have no screening procedure in place. Background screening scans educational, residential, employment, and criminal background of an individual. This helps in uncovering hidden facts of a candidate’s CV, mitigating the risk of a bad hire. While the lack of background screening can lead to adverse consequences, the challenges faced by the healthcare industry in implementing the process can also lead to unfavorable consequences. Considering the huge number of employees in a single hospital, it can take up a substantial amount of time and resources in screening, with no guarantee of accurate results. Outsourcing the process to a trusted screening partner is beneficial in such cases. Not only does it save time and effort, but their expertise combined with technology and skilled resources guarantees reliable results. By filtering out the bad hires, you only employ talent that helps you grow and maintain your standing in the industry.

Medicine is a noble profession where you get a chance to serve humanity. The recent scenario of the industry demonstrates how the profession has turned into a monetary business. The lack of ethical practices has not only led to people losing faith in the profession but also deteriorated the profession’s repute, raising the importance of background checks in healthcare. Implementing a strong recruitment procedure and partnering with a reliable background screening service provider can help the industry serve better and gain back the lost faith.