Have You Changed Careers from Primary Care to Emergency Medicine?
Across America, hospital emergency departments are staffed by eminently qualified Primary Care physicians who have spent their careers specializing in Emergency Medicine. At the Board of Certification in Emergency Medicine® (BCEM), a member board of the American Board of Physician Specialties® (ABPS), we are pleased to offer these physician leaders the opportunity to become board certified in their area of expertise. If you have changed careers from Primary Care to Emergency Medicine and you are interested in validating your expertise in the specialty through board certification, the BCEM can help.
Board Certification in Emergency Medicine With the BCEM
In many cases, primary care physicians didn’t set out to work in the ER – instead, they simply answered the call of their community and filled the need in the hospital. Rural hospitals, in particular, tend to be staffed by physicians who completed their residency training in specialties other than emergency medicine. With the BCEM, these physicians have the opportunity to receive board certification in their specialty area and demonstrate their mastery of the core concepts and competencies that define emergency medicine.
BCEM Eligibility Requirements
To be eligible to apply for initial certification, candidates must satisfy the general requirements of the ABPS. These include being a graduate of a recognized U.S., Canadian, or international allopathic or osteopathic college of medicine, and holding a valid and unrestricted license to practice medicine in the United States, its territories, or Canada. The BCEM has its own eligibility requirements for three certification pathways that include:
- Completion of an ACGME, AOA, RCPSC, or CFPC-accredited residency in emergency medicine
- Completion of an ACGME, AOA, RCPSC, or CFPC residency in one of the following primary care specialties—family practice, internal medicine, pediatric medicine, or general surgery—and at least five years of full-time emergency medicine experience
- Completion of an ACGME, AOA, RCPSC, or CFPC residency in one of the following primary care specialties—family practice, internal medicine, pediatric medicine, or general surgery—and a 12- or 24-month emergency medicine fellowship approved by the BCEM
You can find a list of BCEM-approved fellowships here.
To earn BCEM certification, candidates in all three pathways must pass both a written and oral examination. The computer-based written exam consists of 325 multiple-choice questions. Candidates must pass the written exam to take the oral component.
Once granted, all BCEM certification is good for eight years, expiring on December 31st of the eighth year.
The BCEM Invites Qualified Primary Care Physicians to Apply for Certification
If you have changed careers from primary care to emergency medicine and you have extensive, verifiable experience in the emergency department, you deserve the opportunity to present yourself as an expert in your specialty. Board Certification is a trusted indicator of a physician’s qualifications and is increasingly becoming a requirement for career advancement and continued employment in many healthcare organizations. Plus, there is a sense of personal pride and professional satisfaction that comes from being board certified in your specialty.
To learn more about becoming board certification through the BCEM and the advantages to being part of the ABPS Diplomate community, contact us today.