Query the Data Banks

The NPDB and HIPDB are primarily alert or flagging systems intended to facilitate a comprehensive review of the professional credentials of health care practitioners, providers, and suppliers. Eligible entities should use the information in conjunction with information from other sources when granting clinical privileges or in employment, affiliation, or licensure decisions. Only eligible entities that are currently registered with the NPDB-HIPDB may submit queries.

Eligible entities may query at any time. Eligibility for one Data Bank does not guarantee eligibility for the other Data Bank. Hospitals are the only health care entities with mandatory requirements for querying the NPDB.

Querying the NPDB

Eligible entities may query as follows:

  • Mandatory Querying:

    • Hospitals must query at the time a physician, dentist, or other health care practitioner applies for a position on its medical staff (courtesy or otherwise) or for clinical privileges at the hospital. In addition, hospitals must query every 2 years (biennially) on all physicians, dentists, and other health care practitioners who are on its medical staff (courtesy or otherwise) or have clinical privileges at the hospital. Also, hospitals are required to query the NPDB when a practitioner wishes to add to or expand existing privileges and when a practitioner submits an application for temporary privileges.
  • Voluntary Querying:

    • Hospitals may query at other times as necessary for professional review activity.
    • Other health care entities may query when screening applicants for a medical staff appointment or granting affiliation or clinical privileges, and in support of professional review activity.
    • Professional societies may query when screening an applicant for membership or affiliation, and in support of professional review activity.
    • State medical and dental boards and other State licensing boards may query at any time on physicians, dentists, and other health care practitioners.
    • Health care practitioners may self-query at any time.
    • Plaintiff’s attorneys or a plaintiff representing himself or herself (pro se) may query under certain circumstances.

Querying the HIPDB

Information in the HIPDB is available to:

For more details on querying, refer to the Fact Sheet on Querying PDF Document, the NPDB Guidebook, and the HIPDB Guidebook.