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Updated ABPS Requirements for Orthopedic Surgery Candidates

Updated Requirements for Orthopedic Surgery Candidates Physicians seeking board certification choose the American Board of Physician Specialties® (ABPS) because we’re nationally recognized and highly respected throughout the healthcare industry. ABPS Diplomates practice in some of the nation’s most prestigious healthcare institutions and can be found in all 50 states, the District of Colombia, Puerto Rico, and Canada. Although the eligibility requirements for ABPS certification differ among our various Member Boards, at minimum the ABPS requires that physicians have an undergraduate college degree as well as:

  • A medical school degree
  • Substantial, identifiable training, such as an accredited residency and active practice experience in specific specialty or sub-specialty
  • A valid, unrestricted license to practice medicine

Recently, the ABPS updated eligibility requirements for our Member Board, the Board of Certification in Orthopedic Surgery (BCOS). In the past, BCOS required that candidates present evidence of two years of active post-residency experience and a case log of at least 200 surgical procedures. Now, candidates can apply for certification as soon as they complete their residency.

To earn BCOS certification, candidates must sit for a written exam that consists of 200 clinically-relevant, practice-based questions. Once they pass the written exam, they must then present evidence of at least 18 continuous months of active practice experience in a single facility and a case log of at least 100 surgical procedures performed in the preceding 12-month period before the oral exam.

The BCOS certification process is indeed rigorous, but the skilled and knowledgeable practitioners who achieve certification join a distinguished community of orthopedic surgeons committed to providing exceptional medical care. Additionally, as a mark of a physician’s credential, BCOS certification affords physicians more opportunities for career advancement with the potential for higher earnings.

If you’re considering applying for certification in orthopedic surgery, contact the ABPS for detailed information about the eligibility requirements of the BCOS. As the only multi-specialty certifying body that requires its Diplomates to complete a medical ethics course, the ABPS is renowned for providing hospitals and health care facilities with dedicated professionals who put patients first.