ABPS Board Certification Standards

ABPS Board CertificationThrough a collaborative process that involves Diplomates of the American Board of Physician Specialties® (ABPS) and other accomplished physicians, the ABPS has developed board certification standards that are among the most stringent in the medical industry. These standards ensure that every physician who earns certification through our Member Boards can present to the public as qualified physician specialists.

To be eligible to apply for ABPS certification, candidates must meet our general requirements in addition to the eligibility requirements that have been defined by our specialty boards. While these minimum standards vary depending on the specialty, standards established by each board are designed to signify mastery of the specialty’s core competencies. Furthermore, the ABPS places an emphasis on psychometrically evaluated testing, advanced training, moral character, and experience.

For certification in each specialty, ABPS requires a written examination consisting of multiple-choice questions. For several specialties, we also require an oral exam that provides candidates an opportunity to demonstrate their knowledge and skill in diagnosing and treating patients. All ABPS certifications address the technical knowledge, skills, and abilities essential to the performance of certified physicians and clinically relevant to the practice of their medical specialty.

Our standards for recertification vary depending on the specialty board. Typically, to become recertified by the ABPS, Diplomates and other qualified physicians deemed eligible must commit to continuing medical education, successfully complete a recertification exam, and participate in a non-remedial medical ethics program.

Founded in 1952 to recognize licensed physicians who have mastered their respective fields of medicine, the ABPS offers board certification and recertification standards that meet the healthcare needs of the public and help physicians achieve success in the continuously evolving medical environment. For more information about our standards, contact the ABPS.

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House of Delegates & Annual Scientific Meeting
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June 10-15, 2022
Patient Care Is Our Priority

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

I feel truly blessed and grateful to be an internal medicine board-certified diplomate with the American Board of Physician Specialties. Their ongoing, steadfast commitment to physician board(s) enhancement, forward focused vision, and tenacity is second to none. ABPS has become a recognized choice in Physician Board Certification.

Adam Rench, MD
Internal Medicine
To be the best, you must measure yourself against the best. Achieving Board Certification in Emergency Medicine by the ABPS gave me the opportunity to demonstrate mastery of the art of EM in an objective way. The high bar that ABPS sets for candidates to be allowed to take both the written and oral exam is a testament to ABPS's rigorous vetting of one's ability to practice Emergency Medicine at a high level. By maintaining these credentials, I've been able to instill confidence in my abilities at the department/employer level and ultimately with the patients that choose to seek emergency care at the facilities at which I practice.

Royce Mathew Joseph, MD
Emergency Medicine
The American Board of Physician Specialties has supported the entire field of Integrative Medicine in sponsoring our board. It has been so validating of the importance of prevention-oriented and holistic approaches to care while emphasizing the scientific basis of this specialty to have it recognized by ABPS. I am proud to have been one of the first groups to be board certified by ABPS in Integrative Medicine, leading the way for others committed to training in this specialty.

Myles Spar, MD
Integrative Medicine