The Department of Safety and Professional Services hasn’t seen major issues with the rollout of its new online licensing platform.
As of May 16, 72 healthcare licenses are available through LicensE, Mike Tierney, the department's legislative liaison said at a Friday meeting of the State Council on Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse.
“I’ve seen a lot of horror stories when new software packages are put in and, all of a sudden, when you actually have members of the public engaged in using it, that’s when you find the faults,” he said. “I’m really pleased to say that since the system went online just after midnight on May 16, we have not had major issues.”
They’ve had a “handful” of small challenges that they’ve corrected quickly, like applicants being asked to submit unnecessary forms, he said.
The department is now working through applications received through the new system and the older paper-based system.
“We’re in the middle of graduation season, so we have an extraordinarily high number of people that have graduated from different programs, and so we’re getting certificates of professional education from schools, transcripts,” Tierney said. “Under the new system, those can be directly uploaded, but for the people that applied under the legacy system, our staff has a queue of those that they just have to go through and hit enter. So the great news … for these 72 occupations, this will be the last graduation season that we’ll be working on applications that are under the old system.”
Updating the software was “intense,” which impacted processing licenses, he said.
“It’s a necessary trade-off because the old system simply wasn’t working,” Tierney said.
The agency is facing a backlog of applications. Tierney attributed that to a “huge increase” in the number of applications it’s received in recent years, amid flat staffing levels and antiquated software.