This month, the Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB) began processing applications for expedited licensure under the Interstate Medical Licensure Compact (IMLC). An agreement between participating states and their MD and DO licensing boards, the compact, says FSMB President and CEO, Humayun Chaudhry, DO, MACP, will “empower interested and eligible physicians to deliver high-quality care across state lines to reach more patients in rural and underserved communities.”
For physicians who live near state lines or practice in metropolitan areas that include more than one state, the IMLC is great news. Among other physicians who will benefit most under the IMLC are locum tenens physicians and physicians who provide telemedicine services to patients in other states.
The key thing for physician recruiters to note about the IMLC is the word “expedite.”
Under prior systems, physicians who wanted to practice in more than one state had to navigate a pretty cumbersome process that involved paperwork, fees, and a wait time of up to six months.
How does the IMLC work? Under the process, physicians licensed in one state can be licensed in another without filling out a formal application or sending records to the second state. To participate, a physician must identify a principal state of licensure (where the physician primarily practices or resides) and be board certified in a specialty. That state will be responsible for evaluating the physician’s credentials to participate and their principal state of license must attest to their qualifications. “If a physician is interested in applying for licensure in other jurisdictions, it could be as simple as checking off those states he wants to practice in. He could then become eligible for a license in that state almost automatically, as long as the state was a member of the interstate compact,” says Dr. Chaudhry.
In terms of patient protection, the IMLC strengthens safety by facilitating state medical board sharing of investigative and disciplinary information they couldn’t share before now. The IMLC may also help alleviate physician shortage in rural and underserved areas. For more details on the IMLC, visit their website or take a look at the brief created by the American Medical Association (AMA).
We noted this in an earlier article about state licensing, but it’s worth repeating: The Mayo Clinic Health System strongly supports better process for doctors to be licensed in many states, citing a reduction in time to get another license in another state could help their patients. "To allow Minnesota physician to get that Wisconsin License more efficiently, that's going to have a definite positive impact on our patient care,” said Dr. Dave Rushlow of the Mayo Clinic.
If you’re using Doximity Talent Finder to recruit great physicians, you can use our multiple state license filter to search for physicians with more than one state license. You can even search for physicians within a certain mile radius of a zip code! If you’re not using Doximity Talent Finder, try it for free today.