An integral part of the pre-employment screening that qualifies a health professional to work in most healthcare facilities in Florida is a criminal background check, particularly Level 1 and II background checks.
Once the background check shows you have been involved in certain offenses, you may be deemed ineligible to work in the healthcare industry.
As part of the Florida State’s commitment to ensuring patient safety and security, a new law, which took effect from July 1, 2020, adds battery on a vulnerable adult, minor, or patient of a particular healthcare facility to the list of the disqualifying offenses.
However, health care workers previously found guilty of these vices can seek exemption from disqualification with the help of an experienced health law attorney.
Read on to learn more about the new legislation and how it affects your chances of landing a job in the healthcare industry.
Background Checks for Health Workers Under the New Land
Under the new law, healthcare service providers must subject their employees to stringent Level 2 Background Screening as part of their pre-employment screening or periodic workforce screening, especially for positions that involve caring for vulnerable populations such as the elderly, minors, or the disabled.
Typically, Level 2 Background Screening is a fingerprint-based check that uncovers the following information:
- Convictions and arrests
- Professional license verification
- Education verification
- Professional disciplinary actions
- Exclusion from federal programs
- Sexual offender and predator registry
- Social security number verification
- Credit reports
- Driving records
- Certifications and designations
What Are Disqualifying Offences?
Concerning the new law, disqualifying offenses are crimes that make an individual unfit to work in any healthcare environment. Some of these offenses include:
- Domestic violence offenses
- Aggravated assault
- Aggravated battery
- Enticing or luring a child
- Aggravated child abuse
- Child pornography
- The battery on a minor or vulnerable adult
What to do if Disqualifying Offences Are Discovered in Your Background Check
In case you feel that your hope of landing a hospital job has been shattered, given your criminal background history, you can seek an exemption from disqualification and get hired notwithstanding.
If you are a licensed health professional, you can apply to your professional body for exemption from disqualification. For non-licensed officials, Agency for Health Care Administration (AHCA) is open to their applications for exemption from disqualification.
To exempt you from disqualification, the Florida State will consider specific factors such as:
- The circumstances and facts surrounding the disqualifying offenses
- Parole or probation violations
- The nature or gravity of harm done to the victim
- The length of time since you commit the last disqualifying offense
- Work experience
- Performance evaluations
- Personal references
- Substantial evidence of rehabilitation
- Candor and honesty
- Or any other evidence or circumstance indicates that the individual doesn’t pose a potential danger to patients and colleagues.
The Department of Health (DOH) and Agency for Health Care Administration (AHCA) officials will critically look at the factors above to determine whether you are a perfect fit for the healthcare industry.
Once the officials unanimously conclude that you are fit for employment in a healthcare facility despite your past criminal record, a letter granting an “exemption from disqualification” will be issued to you.
Can I Run a Background Check on Myself?
Yes, you can. Running background on yourself before applying at a healthcare facility will tell you precisely what will be uncovered when the hospital does its background screening.
At this stage, you will know whether to hire an attorney to help you with securing exemption from disqualifying offenses or having them expunged from your record if you are a felon.
If you want to run a personal background check, many fdle live scan locations in Florida. An FDLE-approved live scan vendor can even help you transmit your live scan results to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) or Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) that will in turn process and forward them to the requesting agency or company.
Though livescan fingerprinting cost varies from vendor to vendor, you can get your fingerprint captured in minutes for $22.00 on average.
Tips For Getting a Job at a Hospital as a Felon
Here are a few suggestions to help boost your chances of getting hired regardless of your past criminal history:
- Arrive on time to rehearse appropriate answers to standard interview questions
- Dress responsibly
- Stay courteous, friendly, and calm
- Maintain eye contact with your interviewers.
- Sit upright
- Speak clearly and confidently
- Talk about your skills, experience, and past achievement that qualify you for the job.
- Don’t hesitate to provide your employment history with your current resume upon request.
- Appreciate the interviewers for the opportunity
- Give a firm handshake at the end of the interview.
These tips will help you create a first positive impression in the minds of the hiring representatives.
Don’t hide the fact that you are guilty of disqualifying offenses if the issue comes up. Instead, explain the facts and circumstances surrounding the incident without being emotional. It’s a bad idea to cover up your past during the interview. It may result in dismissing you abruptly if the hospital management eventually knows about it. Emphasize your skill and experience that are related to healthcare during the interview.
Is My Criminal Record Safe?
When it comes to a pre-employment screening for health professionals via live scan fingerprinting Florida mandates employers conducting pre-employment background screening for its applicants to comply with the requirements of FDLE strictly, local courts, FBI, and other law enforcement agencies when obtaining sensitive personal records. They are also under an obligation to treat personal information with absolute discretion.
When you search “live scan near me” on Google, a long list of live scan service providers that pop out might leave you stunned. We are here to help you. If you are staying in Florida or California, Certifix Live scan Company gets you covered no matter your fingerprinting needs. We have over 500 locations in California and Florida. We are a live scan fingerprinting provider certified by DOJ, FBI, and the FDLE.
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Frequently Asked Questions
How does Live Scan work?
The requesting agency provides the applicant with a Request For Live Scan Service Form.
The applicant then takes the form along with proper identification to the nearest live scan location to get fingerprinted via live scan.
This is then sent to the DOJ, FBI or both to be processed.
The DOJ then sends the results to the requesting agency only.
What do I need to get a live scan?
The requesting agency should provide you with a “request for live scan service form”. You will need to fill that out, you will also need to bring a primary form of I.D. such as a Driver’s license or a CA ID
How much does live scan cost?
The fingerprint rolling fee typically ranges between $25-35, these are in addition to the applicable government fees depending on the level of service required by your agency.
The typical fees are Department of Justice (DOJ) $32 and FBI $17.
These fees may range depending on the type of agency requesting your live scan.
If I get a live scan done, can I get a copy of my fingerprints?
The only way to obtain a copy of your live scan results is to ask for a copy from your requesting agency. It is at their discretion to release that information. If you would like to obtain a copy of your personal background check, you can visit https://oag.ca.gov/fingerprints/record-review for more information about how that process works.