About Criminal Background Checks
Frequently Asked Questions
Where can I find a copy of the criminal background check policy?
A copy of the criminal background check policy can be found here.
How do I know if I need a background check?
You need a background check if you are:
- A newly accepted student getting ready to matriculate
- About to go to your clinical site (typically between the second and third years)
- Repeating a year
- Off the typical cycle and planning to return to classes or your clinical site; this could be for any of the following reasons:
- You have taken a leave of absence for any reason
- You are a dual-degree student who has been away from Heritage College working on your other degree
- You are a Primary Care or OMM Associate
Does it matter when it’s done?
Yes. Here’s how to know when you should get a background check:
- First-time enrolled students entering in fall 2023 will initiate the background check process through Certiphi via their AACOMAS application portal beginning Feb 2023.
- A fingerprint background check for first-time entering students or other students entering the fall class: June 1 - July 1
- All students between years two and three, prior to starting a clinical site: April 1 - May 1
- Anyone who has been off-cycle (dual-degree students or PCA/OMM Associates, returning from a leave of absence, etc): 60 days prior to your proposed return to classes or clinical rotations
Where can you get a background check done?
Beginning in 2022, all first-time medical students will use Certiphi to initiate their criminal background check process. CastleBranch or a local Webcheck location can still be utilized by all other HCOM students until further notice.
What type of background check is required?
The background check must be a FINGERPRINT background check, and you need both a BCI (state) and an FBI (federal) check.
I’m being asked for a “reason code.” What do I say?
The Ohio Revised Code when requesting the in-state background check (BCI) is Other- Medical School, and the Authorized Reason Code for the FBI background check is Volunteer Children’s Act, NCPA/VCA.
How often do I need to do a background check?
If you follow the normal four-year cycle, you’ll get one before your first year starts and another before your third year starts.
If you are off-cycle for any reason, you have to re-do your background check within 60 days of returning to classes or your clinical site. Clinical partners and elective or audition rotation sites may ask for more recent background check results.
Where are results sent?
Results are always sent to the Office of Admissions on the Athens campus. Always. It doesn’t matter if you’re on the Athens, Dublin or Cleveland campus, nor does it matter if you’re at a clinical site. Results are always sent to the admissions office on the Athens campus.
Here is the exact address:
Attn: Jill Harman
191 West Union Street
Athens, OH 45701
Can I get a copy of my background check?
You always have access to your background checks in eMedley.