Changing Standards, Changing Reality: How the ABPS Helps Physicians Adapt to an Evolving Healthcare System

Evolving Health CareHealthcare standards are different today than they were 50 years ago, and they will not be the same 50 years from now. The healthcare industry must respond to inevitable evolution by providing an accurate means of measuring the ability of physician specialists to deliver the best possible medical care. Diplomates of the American Board of Physicians Specialties (ABPS) are positioned not only to respond to the changing nature of healthcare in the United States and Canada, but also to help shape the very future of the healthcare industry.

The ABPS Takes a Non-Discriminatory Approach to Board Certification

The ABPS arose, in part, as a response to the shifting reality of the healthcare landscape. As the population of qualified osteopathic physicians grew in the mid-20th century, they required a path to board certification. The parent company of the ABPS, the American Association of Physician Specialists (AAPS), Inc., was the first organization of its kind to accept qualified osteopathic physicians (DO) as well as allopathic physicians (MD). That is just one example of how the ABPS, at a foundational level, has historically responded to the evolving reality of healthcare in the U.S. and Canada.

The ABPS Offers Certification in Emerging Medical Specialties

As healthcare continues to evolve, we remain committed to our goal of enabling physicians to gain personal and professional advancement while meeting today’s increasing demands for patient care. To that end, we have created other boards that are unique in the certification industry, including:

  • The American Board of Integrative Medicine (ABOIM)
  • The Board of Certification in Urgent Care Medicine (BCUCM)
  • The Board of Certification in Family Medicine Obstetrics (BCFMO)
  • The American Board of Administrative Medicine (ABAM)
  • The Board of Certification in Emergency Medicine (BCEM)

With a significant lineup of specialty boards, ABPS is one of three recognized multi-specialty certifying organizations. The rigorous ABPS certification standards are equivalent to those of ABMS and AOS and offer physicians a credible choice in board certification and recertification.

General Eligibility Requirements for ABPS Board Certification

While the eligibility requirements of the ABPS differ from specialty to specialty, there are certain general eligibility requirements that are shared by all ABPS Member Boards. These include:

  • Being in conformity with the Code of Ethics of the ABPS, being known in the community as an ethical member of the profession, and being an active practitioner in the specialty for which you’re seeking certification
  • Having graduated from a recognized U.S., Canadian, or international allopathic or osteopathic college of medicine. International graduates must also hold a valid Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG) Certificate.
  • Holding a valid and unrestricted license(s) to practice medicine in the United States, U.S. territories, or Canada.

Why Physicians Seek ABPS Board Certification

Diplomates of the Member Boards of the ABPS have demonstrated that they possess the skill sets and knowledge necessary to provide the best available care for patients. They also belong to a community of physicians who are equally dedicated to the advancement of medical care within their chosen specialties, while adhering to the ABPS code of medical ethics. ABPS Diplomates share best practices among themselves, and have access to professional networking opportunities with fellow physicians. Communication is a key component to remaining nimble in the face of change as an organization. In addition, ABPS physicians help develop the board certification exams, which are clinically based and designed to test physicians’ knowledge of recent medical advances, as well as the depth of their experience.

To learn more about how the ABPS responds to – and helps shape – ongoing change in the field of healthcare in the U.S. and Canada, contact us today. The ABPS is the official multi-specialty board certifying body of the AAPS.

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House of Delegates & Annual Scientific Meeting
Innovation & Overcoming Challenges
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.

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