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AMA commits to helping reshape continuing board certification

Brendan Murphy , Senior News Writer

The AMA House of Delegates has adopted policy to ensure that the AMA will continue to be a leading voice in the ongoing efforts to reshape the continuing board certification (CBC) process.  

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According to an AMA Council on Medical Education report presented at the November 2020 AMA Special Meeting, several changes to the CBC process are under consideration by the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS). These include offering alternatives to the high-stakes, 10-year examinations for recertification and offering additional flexibility in the activities that are considered acceptable to meet Improvement in Medical Practice requirements.

Those considerations were recommended by a 2018 commission, established by the ABMS, to reexamine the CBC process. The AMA offered comment to the commission.

“The Council on Medical Education is committed to ensuring that CBC supports physicians’ ongoing learning and practice improvement and can assure the public that physicians are providing high-quality patient care,” says the council’s report. “The Council will remain actively engaged in the implementation of the Commission’s recommendations and continue to identify and suggest improvements to CBC programs.”

Delegates adopted new policy stating that the AMA, through its Council on Medical Education, should “continue to work with the American Board of Medical Specialties and ABMS member boards to implement key recommendations outlined by the Continuing Board Certification: Vision for the Future Commission in its final report, including the development of new, integrated standards for continuing certification programs by 2020 that will address the commission’s recommendations for flexibility in knowledge assessment and advancing practice, feedback to diplomates, and consistency.”