Changes to the background study process include using:
Changes to the background study process will:
The processes and systems that are being developed will result in:
The processes and systems that are being developed will:
After implementation of NETStudy 2.0, people applying for a position with a new entity will provide their fingerprints and have their photo taken at a location around the state. The fingerprint and photo process should take about five-to-ten minutes and is completed by a trained technician. The fingerprint image will be transmitted through a secure system to the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA). While not retained by DHS or the BCA, fingerprints will be retained by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) but, in cases where an FBI check is required. Criminal history results, if any, will then be electronically transmitted to DHS. Over 90% of background studies are expected to be completed within a few hours after the person is fingerprinted and photographed. Photographs will be transmitted through a secure system to DHS and will be available in the NETStudy 2.0 system. Fingerprints and photo images will be purged from the fingerprint and photo service location within an hour of the information being submitted to the state.
You can find a fingerprint location that is near you by selecting your county on the map. This will take you to a regional listing of locations that includes the address and hours available for fingerprinting.
Information about fingerprint and photo locations, including addresses and hours of operation, is available on 3M Cogent's webpage.
The fingerprinting and photo service fee is $9.10. In most cases, this is a one-time process in a person's career for a DHS background study.
Once all entities are transitioned to NETStudy 2.0, fingerprint cards will be eliminated with some very limited exceptions.
On November 5, 2013, DHS published a Request for Proposal (RFP) for a vendor to establish the statewide fingerprinting and photo locations. In September 2014, DHS contracted with 3M Cogent to provide the statewide infrastructure for fingerprinting and photographing people needing a DHS background study.
You may select from over 50 statewide locations to have your fingerprints and photo taken. A list of the fingerprint and photo service locations is available on the 3M Cogent website. The entity that initiated your background study will give you a Fingerprint Authorization Form.
When you go to the fingerprint and photo service location you MUST bring both your Fingerprint Authorization Form AND your driver's license, government-issued ID, or other acceptable form of identification. It is very important to be sure that your name and date of birth on the Fingerprint Authorization Form is exactly the same as the information on your identification.
If the information on the Fingerprint Authorization Form does not match, contact the place that request the background study and have them correct it. If the information on the form does not exactly match your identification, you will be turned away at the fingerprint and photo location.
You have up to 14 days to be fingerprinted and photographed. Sometimes the place that requested the background study wants you to go sooner. Let the place that requested your background study know if there is a reason that you cannot go to be fingerprinted and photographed in the 14 day period.
If the place that requested your background study did not pay for the fingerprinting and photo service, you will need to pay the $9.10 fee. Payment can be made:
The fingerprints will be used to obtain criminal history information on the background study subject from the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension and in some cases, the FBI.
For some, the fingerprints will also be used to complete an FBI record check. An FBI record check is required for people whose:
The fingerprints will not be retained by DHS or the BCA. If the fingerprints are submitted to the FBI, the FBI retains them.
Currently, FBI record checks are only required in certain circumstances.
In the present system, information from the BCA can identify when criminal history records may exist in another state. However, the information is only available if the person also has a criminal record in Minnesota. This means that some people with criminal records in another state may clear a background study. If FBI record checks were required for all background studies, criminal records in other states would be reported to DHS even if the person did not have a criminal record in Minnesota.
The bill that amends the Department of Human Services Background Studies Act - Minnesota Statues, chapter 245C was signed into law by Governor Dayton on May 16, 2014. The legislation was passed unanimously in both the House and Senate. The law supports the background study enhancements, including requiring the use of fingerprints to complete state criminal record checks through the BCA. It also requires that background study subjects submit fingerprints and a photograph. The changes do not affect when a background study is required or what may disqualify a person. Most people who are currently affiliated will not be affected unless they change jobs.
Implementation of NETStudy 2.0 is moving forward in early 2016.
The NETStudy 2.0 system is able to accept background study requests for all health and human service program types licensed by the Minnesota Departments of Human Services, Health and Corrections, unlicensed personal care provider organizations and certain transportation providers. The system is also able to accept background studies for county child protection workers.
Work is continuing on systems development to permit background study subjects to complete some data entry to begin their background study. This is expected to be available in June 2016.
NETStudy 2.0 is being used by a limited number of providers that represent all service types that are required to submit background study requests to DHS. In December 2015, providers of special and non-emergency medical transportation services began onboarding to NETStudy 2.0. In January 2016, providers that are also fingerprint and photo service locations were contacted to transition to NETStudy 2.0.
NETStudy 2.0 offers ways to structure the background study sensitive information person (SIP) to permit background study results to be transferable across programs operated by the same entity. These options are covered in the NETStudy2.0 Onboarding Guide and onboarding informational YouTube video. In addition to being available here, links to these materials will be sent to each entity's authorized agent approximately one to three weeks prior to the entity receiving information to onboard to NETStudy 2.0.
It is important to know that the onboarding will include all license and organization numbers used for background studies that are connected to the entity based on the email address of the authorized agent for the entity. For example, if an entity that has the same authorized agent for a home care agency, a child care center, and a personal care provider organization, the onboarding tool will include all three programs and all will be transitioned to NETStudy 2.0 when the onboarding is completed.
Authorized Agent - Onboarding Contact
Contacts with information to transition to NETStudy 2.0 will be sent to the authorized agent for the entity. The authorized agent is a license holder, controlling individual, or managing employee. The onboarding contact relies on the email address that your entity gave to the Minnesota Department of Human Services or Minnesota Department of Health for licensing or for personal care provider organizations for enrollment as a Minnesota Health Care Provider.
Beginning in February 2016, providers that operate only one program will be contacted to transition to NETStudy 2.0. Once these providers receive the onboarding tool, the next provider group of providers will be contacted. All provider types are expected to receive the onboarding tool prior to August 2016. Providers who are interested in transitioning to the new system early, may contact DHS by email at DHS.NETStudy2@state.mn.us.
|Provider Group||Onboarding Timeline|
|Transportation providers||December 2015|
|Providers that operate fingerprint and photo service locations||January 2016|
|Providers with one program only||February - March 2016|
|Providers at their request||Ongoing, beginning March 1, 2016|
|Providers with more than one program||April - May 2016|
|Educational programs, personnel pool agencies, and temporary personnel and professional services agencies||June 2016, See below (1)|
|Providers with more than 100 licenses or programs and large health/hospital systems||See below (2)|
|Child foster care||See below (3)|
|Adult foster care||See below (4)|
|County child protection workers||Available upon request|
(1) Educational programs, personnel pool agencies, and temporary personnel and professional services agencies will be contacted to transition to NETStudy 2.0. These entities will have a different onboarding process because the information needed to use the automated onboarding tool is not on record.
(2) Providers with more than 100 licenses or programs, and large health/hospital systems will be contacted six to eight weeks prior to their transition to NETStudy 2.0.
(3) Counties and private placement agencies that license child foster care homes and submit background study requests on behalf of child foster care providers, will be contacted to transition to NETStudy 2.0. They will not use the onboarding tool to establish their accounts.
(4) Adult foster care programs that are operated by corporate entities will be included in the onboarding schedule based whether it is a single license or the entity has more than one license. Family adult foster care homes will be transitioned to NETStudy 2.0 through the county in which they are licensed. Family adult foster care license holders will not be contacted because their background studies are submitted through counties.
NETStudy 2.0 training is web-based and free. There are several YouTube videos available that demonstrate how to initiate a background study request in NETStudy 2.0 as well as all other key features of the system. It is easiest to follow along with the videos after you have a NETStudy 2.0 account.
Training materials also include the NETStudy 2.0 User Manual that provides detailed instructions, including screenshots and user tips about how to use NETStudy 2.0 and the NETStudy 2.0 Quickstart Guide that provides screen shots to show users how to enter a background study request.
These training materials will be provided to entities in advance of their transition to NETStudy 2.0.
DHS will hold several open forum conference calls during the initial implementation period to address questions and issues from NETStudy 2.0 users. The calls will be facilitated by technical and program staff and are scheduled on Tuesday mornings and Thursday afternoons beginning in mid-February, 2016. The schedule is subject to change. NETStudy 2.0 users will receive specific call times and access information through the system.
Questions about the use of NETStudy 2.0, onboarding, or system access or use that are not covered in the training materials may be submitted to DHS through email at DHS.NETStudy2@state.mn.us or by phone at 651-431-6625. In your message please include the reference to the issue in the training materials.
This Excel document provides a list of the entities and the authorized agents who will be contacted as entities are transitioned to NETStudy 2.0. The list can be filtered and searched, and will be regularly updated. If the "notes" column for one or more of your entities shows "no AA and/or "no AA email," or if the authorized agent information is no longer accurate, you must update the authorized agent information with the appropriate licensing agency.
Department of Human Services (DHS) Licensed Programs:
The license holders should contact their DHS licensor at 651-431-6500. The license holder will be required to update the authorized agent information by submitting a change in terms form.
Department of Health (MDH) Licensed Programs:
The license holder should contact the Health Regulation Division at Health.email@example.com and request instructions to update the authorized agent information.
DHS pursued feedback from stakeholders for developing the new NETStudy 2.0 system. The feedback was used to design the new background study process and the related legislative amendments. Additionally, DHS staff attended conferences and meetings throughout 2014 and 2015 to share information about the background study changes and solicit feedback and ideas. Beginning in fall 2014, many of these presentations and meetings included demonstrations of NETStudy 2.0 in development.
Between July and October 2014, DHS held overview and feedback meetings in nine statewide locations. A recording of the presentation is available online as a YouTube video and PowerPoint presentation.
In October 2014, 3M Cogent opened a survey to entities and background study subjects to provide feedback about the statewide fingerprint and photo service. Results of that survey are available online.
Education Program Survey
Information to be added.
In July 2014, DHS selected a group of providers licensed by the Minnesota Department of Health to pilot test NETStudy 2.0. DHS later expanded the pilot by adding several programs licensed by DHS. On April 6, 2015, the pilot providers began submitting fingerprint based background study requests in NETStudy 2.0. Several enhancements to NETStudy 2.0 have been made based on feedback from these pilot providers.
DHS pursued and was awarded a $3 million grant by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) in August 2012 to enhance the background study program. The National Background Check Program (NBCP) helps entities avoid hiring individuals with certain criminal histories by conducting federal- and state-level criminal background checks on people who provide health and human services.
DHS identified five goals for using the funds:
Goals one-through-three are met, and most of goal four is met with the implementation of NETStudy 2.0. Goal five requires legislative authorization to expand FBI record checks.
Updates about the changes to background study processes and implementation of NETStudy 2.0 are communicated through notices in the current NETStudy system and to people on the background study email list. You can subscribe to the background study email list.
Questions about the background study changes and NETStudy 2.0 may be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org or by contacting DHS at 651-431-6625.