Why Emergency Medicine Practice Management Groups Should Encourage Board Certification for EM Physicians

EM PhysiciansIf they are not already doing so, it is “good medicine” for practice management groups throughout the United States to encourage their emergency department physicians to achieve Physician Board Certification in Emergency Medicine. Nationally, about 40 percent of EM physicians are not actually trained or certified in emergency medicine. Many specialize in family medicine or another specialty, yet have been actively practicing at the local hospital emergency department for years – or even decades, in some cases.

The American Board of Physician Specialties (ABPS) and the affiliated Board of Certification in Emergency Medicine (BCEM) advocate the position that EM physicians who have mastered the core competencies required to provide the best possible care to emergency patients deserve the right to demonstrate that by earning board certification in Emergency Medicine. The ABPS and BCEM have established a respected platform for physicians to earn Emergency Medicine board certification. Successful completion of the BCEM exam proves a mastery of emergency medicine, as well as a professional commitment to adhere to the ABPS Medical Code of Ethics.

The BCEM Certification Process

The BCEM has developed rigorous standards to ensure that emergency medicine physicians have the training and skills necessary to deliver exceptional medical in a hectic emergency room. To be eligible for BCEM certification physicians must satisfy stringent eligibility requirements. To achieve certification, they must then pass a comprehensive exam. In short, earning BCEM not only formally proves their competency but also indicates to patients and the public at large that these dedicated EM practitioners are among the most talented in their field.

How BCEM Certification Benefits Health Care

BCEM certification declares to hospital leaders and stakeholders that these BCEM Diplomates have attained the skills and knowledge to deliver emergency care at the highest levels. BCEM certification also lends enormous prestige to healthcare organizations by declaring to the public that their EM physicians are highly credentialed professionals who can be trusted to give them the expert care they seek.

A Unique Opportunity for Primary-Care Trained Emergency Physicians

Because there is a nationwide shortage of emergency medicine physicians, practice management groups would do well to consider recommending the pursuit of board certification to their contracted EM physicians. As it is, many primary-care-trained EM physicians are not being encouraged to pursue board certification in emergency medicine. Why does that matter? Because Board Certification in Emergency Medicine demonstrates that the EM physicians hired by practice management groups are maintaining the level of knowledge required to provide the best available emergency care. ABPS and BCEM provide the ideal platform for qualified physicians to become board certified in this important specialty. To learn more, or to inquire about earning board certification in Emergency Medicine, contact the ABPS.

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On October 18, 2007, President George W. Bush released Homeland Security Presidential Directive 21 (HSPD-21), calling on our nation, among other initiatives, to “collectively support and facilitate the establishment of a discipline of disaster health”. It is a great testament to the wisdom and foresight of the American Board of Physician Specialties that it immediately set to work and created, within the short span of only one year, an educational blueprint and set of certification examinations, both written and oral, for a new subspecialty of disaster medicine—and it is why I chose to be part this vital initiative and this wonderful organization. This is but one of the many innovative programs initiated by the American Board of Physician Specialties over the years, and why I am proud to support its work on behalf of our nation’s public health.

Art Cooper, MD
Disaster Medicine
When the American Board of Physician Specialties offered to host the American Board of Integrative Medicine, ABPS became a landmark organization working to move medicine into the twenty first century. Certifying physicians who have completed rigorous academic training in Integrative Medicine ensures that the field of Integrative Medicine will continue to develop academically, clinically, and professionally. The leadership of ABPS continues to impress me - they are diligent in constantly innovating to provide certifications for physicians who want to advance their careers and their areas of expertise. I am honored to be a part of this organization.

Ann Marie Chiasson, MD
Integrative Medicine
There are many ways board certification advances a physician career. ABPS Board examination verifies your accuracy, precision, and reflects your mastery of your residency training verifying your expertise. ABPS Board certification demonstrates your level of expertise beyond your practice experience, primary education degrees, and training which are necessary for insurance reimbursement and practice privilege requirements. Attaining your ABPS Board Certification will clarify your purpose, secure your practice growth, and expand into leadership positions. Board certification can serve as an indication of a physician’s commitment to medicine, beyond the minimal standards and competency of training, their measurement to quality of care, and attaining an award for excellence.

Chris Kunis MD
Internal Medicine
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