About the American Board of Physician Specialties and Physician Board Certification

ABPS HistoryThe American Association of Physician Specialists Inc. (AAPS) was founded by surgeons in 1950, and incorporated in 1952, as the American Academy of Osteopathic Surgeons. The AAPS physician certifying body, the American Board of Physician Specialties® (ABPS), which certifies both MDs and DOs, has grown in stature over the years, to become one of the most prestigious multi-specialty physician board certification bodies in the United States, along with the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) and the American Osteopathic Association/Bureau of Osteopathic Specialists (AOABOS).

The ABPS consists of 12 governing boards that oversee physician board certification for 20 specialties and subspecialties which is the official board certifying body for the AAPS. The ABPS was formed on the basis of the idea that patient care is enhanced by a foundation of inclusion when it comes to physician board certification. We readily accept qualified allopathic and osteopathic physicians. A big part of the appeal of the ABPS for physicians is the sense of community that comes with joining a large, inclusive, and diverse group of like-minded professionals and having a voice that matters in that group.

The ABPS community of Diplomates is built around the concept of interactive connectedness which encourages the sharing of knowledge and best practices. In addition to ample professional networking opportunities, each public member has the freedom and authority to act as a public advocate within the chosen specialty. Despite the “big tent” philosophy, board certification through one of the Member Boards of the ABPS is a monumental intellectual challenge for physicians. Eligibility requirements and testing standards are equally rigorous.

A physician who has achieved board certification through the ABPS will have thoroughly demonstrated a mastery of the core body of knowledge and skills in the chosen specialty at a specific time. The testing standards are valid, reliable, and psychometrically sound. In addition, the work ethic and dedication of ABPS board certified physicians can never be disputed. The standards for recertification are rigorous, and the ABPS is the only major certifying body that requires a non-remedial medical ethics course every eight years.

The ABPS is dedicated to ensuring inclusiveness in the physician board certification and recertification process. Contact us today for information about physician board certification in your specialty or subspecialty.

Save the Date
House of Delegates & Annual Scientific Meeting
New Approaches to Improve Patient Outcomes
JUNE 26 - JULY 1, 2020
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.

ABPS gives its members unique opportunities to learn and develop professionally. I have been practicing Emergency Medicine for over 27 years and have been privileged to be a member of this fabulous organization. Through ABPS I have developed tremendously in my professional career becoming a consummate practitioner of my trade, a physician leader locally at my hospital, in my region , at the state level, and a published clinical researcher.
Leslie Mukau, MD, FAAEP, FACEP
Emergency Medicine
ABPS provides a guarantee of a high level of competency. Not only has this been good for my professional development but it has assured my patients that the clinicians they see are trained to the highest degree.


Mimi Guarneri, MD, FACC
Integrative Medicine
I value my ABPS certification very highly because it is one-of-a-kind certification in Urgent Care Medicine under the auspices of a larger, reputable organization. I really enjoy the professional and personal relationships I have formed with other individuals in the development of this new board and appreciate the great lengths that ABPS goes to ensure and enhance the recognition of it's component boards.
Joseph D. Toscano, MD
Urgent Care Medicine