Why Physician Specialists Pursue Dual Board Certification
There are two primary reasons physician specialists might seek dual board certification from a multi-specialty certifying body such as the American Board of Physician Specialties® (ABPS).
The first is that a young physician starting out in a career might decide that his or her interests lie along two paths, likely in related fields. These new physicians are determined to chart their own course, and they begin early by establishing their credentials in multiple fields of study. Over the course of a career, the ability of a physician to demonstrate the knowledge and skill required to provide the best possible care in more than one field might position him or her for promotions and/or other, higher-paying and more prestigious jobs. In short, dual board certification might provide a leg up on the competition, as well as providing proof that a physician possesses a superlative level of skill and experience in not one, but two, fields of medicine.
The other reason has less to do with career advancement, and more to do with the unexpected paths medical careers occasionally take. That is, physicians who might begin their careers board certified in Internal Medicine or Family Medicine could one day discover that they have mastered the core competencies of another specialty entirely after several years or even decades. For example, a Family Medicine practitioner in a rural area might have decades of documented experience in obstetrics or in a hospital emergency department and may be eligible to seek board certification in Family Medicine Obstetrics or in Hospital Medicine.
If you believe you might fall into either of these two categories, contact the ABPS for information about eligibility and to learn more about the benefits of dual board certification. The ABPS is the official multi-specialty board certifying body of the American Association of Physician Specialists, Inc.