What is the Role of Board Certification in Administrative Medicine?


One of the most significant changes to the healthcare sector in recent years is the gradual movement from small family practices to large healthcare organizations. These days medicine’s big business, and recent healthcare reforms further incentivized the consolidation of power and creation of new leadership opportunities. At the American Board of Physician Specialties®, we recognized the increasingly important role that Administrative Medicine serves in healthcare, which is why we developed the American Board of Administrative Medicine® (ABAM) – the first board of its kind to offer full board certification honors to a physician with extensive business experience as well as medical training.

Developing ABAM was “an important step toward standardizing what the skills and abilities are that make physician leaders most effective in leading change,” says Christopher Kodama, MD, MBA. Across the healthcare industry, board certification has become the preferred method for demonstrating competency. To be eligible to pursue certification through the ABAM, candidates must meet rigorous eligibility requirements, and must have completed a master’s degree in business administration, medical management, or health management. Alternatively, they may demonstrate that they have five years of documented cumulative experience in a leadership position.

Board certification in Administrative Medicine is an opportunity for highly motivated physicians who have extensive experience and training in business to present themselves to peers, employers, and prospective employers as leaders in the industry. Where healthcare organizations are often led by individuals with no formal medical background, Diplomates of the ABAM will be compelling candidates for advancement because of their unique insights into management and medicine. As Nicholas M. Holmes, MD, MBA, explains, board certification “allows physicians to have equal seating at the table with those who do not have a medical background.”

To learn more about the ABAM and the role of board certification in administrative medicine, contact us today. The ABPS is the official certifying body of the American Association of Physician Specialists, Inc.®

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Medical organizations throughout North America understand that our rigorous certification standards prove that ABPS Diplomates are capable of delivering the best patient care possible.

When I think historically, advancement in medicine and patient safety and care has been driven by the diversity of people and scientific thought. That’s what I found at the ABPS and more. For over 60 years that is just who we are. I found a physician certifying body that provides a choice and voice to all physicians ensuring that patients are always placed first.

Jerry Allison, MD
Emergency Medicine
When I decided to pursue a full time role as a physician executive it was important to me to obtain additional professional training, education and work experience. Board certification through the ABPS in Administrative Medicine is validation of my efforts and a demonstration of dedication to professional development. We need more physicians to become full time health care executives, knowing there is a board certification option in Administrative Medicine encourages physicians to take the leap from full time clinical practice to healthcare organizational leadership.

Richard Paula, MD
Administrative Medicine
The American Board of Physician Specialties has provided me with the opportunity to demonstrate mastery of internal medicine through board certification. As a hospitalist, board certification is an expected credential, and hospitals recognize the American Board of Physician Specialties (ABPS) as one of the three standard credentialling bodies for Internal Medicine. Additionally, the ABPS has helped me develop leadership skills as a Board member and Committee Chairperson. ABPS has also helped me sharpen critical thinking skills as a test question developer and reviewer. The Allopathic (MD) and Osteopathic (DO) physicians in the ABPS are lifelong learners and frequently pursue multiple board certifications. I enjoy the camaraderie of my peers in ABPS.

Loren Jay Chassels, DO
Internal Medicine