Revision Responsibility: Dean, School of Nursing
Responsible Executive Office: Vice President of Academic Affairs
Purpose: The purpose of this policy is to define Platt College’s policy for background checks. For a variety of reasons, students enrolled in Platt College’s nursing program, a program that requires off-campus field-based assignments such as clinical rotations, are required to submit to a criminal background check following acceptance, but prior to their admission to the program. Accepted applicants’ background checks must be received within 10 days of notification of acceptance. Delayed receipt of completed background check may result in the applicant’s acceptance being revoked. Failure of any portion of a program's required checks may be the basis for barring the student from admission or completion of that specialized program, depending on the findings and based upon the current nursing program's requirements.
Platt College’s implementation of background checks for students is primarily in response to various affiliates'/agencies' requirements for accepting students for clinical rotations. These affiliates/agencies include, but are not limited to, clinics, hospitals, health facilities, pharmacies, community-based organizations, or local, state or federal agency requirements. If a clinical affiliate/agency or other organization requires the checks prior to accepting Platt College students, the college must comply. At Platt College, it is required that the college will conduct the background check at the student's expense. Platt College reserves the right to request another background check at any point in a student’s program. Additionally, a drug screen is required for all nursing students upon admission, annually, randomly, and/or at the discretion of the clinical affiliate/agency. Students who perform clinical assignments for a Children’s Hospital are required to be finger-printed. Other clinical affiliate/agencies may also require fingerprinting.
Platt College requires background checks as a condition of admission or acceptance for clinical rotation and may do so because:
Accepted applicants to Platt College’s nursing program will be denied admission without successful completion of a seven-year criminal background check. Admission status is assigned upon successful completion of the background check.
The final repository of the official criminal background checks is located in the College's secure learning management system, My Platt College; however, the student may be asked to upload the background check into other technology solutions to meet the individual requirements of clinical affiliates/agencies.. Records requests for release, copies, etc. should be directed to the Executive Administrative Assistant in writing. Students will be required to sign an Informed Consent/Release for Criminal Background Investigation for potential release of their background checks to Platt College in addition to a Disclosure and Release Form available from www.plattcollegecx.com.
In order to be accepted into certain affiliates (hospitals/medical centers) for clinical placements, students may also be required by such hospitals/medical centers to submit to additional checks including, but not limited to, drug screens, Social Security number trace for previous residencies, employment checks, Office of Inspector General (OIG) Sanctions List, General Services Administration's Excluded Parties Listing System (GSA/EPLS), violent sex offender and predator registry search, applicable state exclusion list, US Treasury Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), and the list of specifically designated nationals. Whether such additional checks will be required and the procedures for conducting the same, will be the sole responsibility of the affiliates (hospitals/medical clinics) requiring them. Platt College does not conduct such additional checks unless specifically agreed to by the particular program.
Clinical affiliate/agency - An affiliate who, by agreement with Platt College, provides clinical education experiences for Platt College students.
Background Check - Background checks include the State of Colorado and the nation.
This policy applies to all undergraduate nursing students that are required by conditional admission, field experience, and clinical affiliation.
B. Admissions, Field Experience, and Clinical Placement, Dismissal
C. Admission, Clinical Education, Field-Based Experience, Waiver/Consent
D. Obtaining a Criminal Background Check
E. Background Check Package
If the investigation reveals information that could be relevant to the application, the designated individual responsible for background checks may request additional information from the applicant. The offense shall be reviewed on a case by case basis. Students who have successfully completed the terms of a deferred adjudication agreement will not be disqualified.
If any applicant feels the criminal background check is inaccurate, they may appeal the decision and request a review. It is the applicant’s burden to produce substantial evidence that proves the crimes charged are incorrect.
For purposes of this policy, the term "conviction" will be interpreted broadly and will include pleas of no contest, withheld judgments, suspended sentences, and similar dispositions. If a criminal history report indicates pending criminal charges that, if a conviction resulted, would result in exclusion from admission, field experience, or clinical placement, the candidate may be excluded from admission, field experience, or clinical placement pending the final disposition of the charges.
a. Clinical affiliates/agencies may have the discretion to determine whether a student's background is acceptable, if deemed necessary according to the clinical affiliates’ policy.
b. Since background checks may be done at different times during a program, additional or updated background checks may be required prior to the beginning of the clinical or didactic portion of the program.
c. Students will be afforded notice and the opportunity to be heard prior to any program's action or dismissal in accordance. Notwithstanding any other College or student appeal process, this procedure shall be the exclusive and final procedure available to the student. However, if the student is challenging the accuracy or completeness of the criminal background records, a final decision regarding the student's status will be delayed pending the results of the challenge.
d. Retention. Individual background checks will be kept by Nursing Admissions Coordinator in accordance with Platt College’s Policy 03:03:00 Confidentiality of Student Records Policy.
e. Students have 30 days to notify the Dean or Associate Dean of Nursing of a charge or conviction that occurs while they are enrolled in nursing school at Platt College. If notification to the School of Nursing is not made and a change in background status is discovered, the student may be terminated from the program.
Timeframe and Application:
Valid and cleared background checks that have been previously completed will only be accepted within six months of the student’s official start date. All background checks must be completed through American DataBank.
G. Compact and Single-state Licensing
As of January 18, 2018 any nurse applying for a new RN license in Colorado will need to obtain a fingerprint background check as part of the application process. The compact law does not provide the applicant the option to choose between a compact license or a single-state license. All Colorado applications are processed according to compact requirements.
If there is a "hit" or flagged item on the background check, the review process can take additional time, up to and including review by the State Board of Nursing. These hits do not automatically exclude someone from license eligibility, but a felony conviction would exclude someone from a compact license. In these cases, the Board may consider whether or not an individual would be eligible for a single-state, Colorado only, license.
|Policy Appendix: Summary of Your Rights Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act|
Revised: August 4, 2009, Revised: January 17, 2011 to reflect revised organizational chart, August 5, 2014 to update college titles, and to include community-based organizations and local, state, or federal agency requirements, June 17, 2016, to reflect change in Background Check timeline in relation to the Admissions Process and to specify the clinical sites ability to reject a student based on their specific regulations, March 22, 2017 to include CCCS Disqualifying Offenses list. Revised June 29, 2018 to reflect new Board of Nursing (DORA) approach to compact licensing in regards to flagged background checks.