Urgent Care Centers Can Distinguish Themselves

Urgent CareSince their advent in the 1980s, urgent care centers have become fixtures in communities across the United States. A recent estimate puts the number of urgent facilities in the country at more than 9,000, with more facilities opening every month. The reasons for their growth and popularity are understandable when examined against the backdrop of the current medical landscape. By eliminating long wait times for physician appointments, offering an alternative to crowded hospital emergency departments, and providing after-hours care, urgent care centers give patients the convenience and accessibility they had long sought when needing treatment for minor injuries, aches, pains, and illnesses.

The proliferation of urgent care centers in the U.S. means that the marketplace has grown decidedly competitive, and to remain attractive alternatives to patients, facilities must distinguish themselves effectively. Many of these facilities are staffed by physicians who are certified in family medicine or emergency medicine, so hiring physicians who have earned board certification in urgent care medicine lets urgent care centers stand out from the pack. The American Board of Physician Specialties® (ABPS) is the only multi-specialty certifying body that offers board certification in urgent care. For physicians to earn certification through the Board of Certification in Urgent Care Medicine (BCUCM), they must meet stringent eligibility requirements and pass a rigorous exam developed by Diplomates of the BCUCM under the direction of ABPS psychometric consultants. Hence, hiring a physician certified through the BCUCM adds to the prestige and authority of an urgent care center because that physician has been recognized as one who has demonstrated mastery of urgent care medicine knowledge as well as commitment to the ABPS Medical Code of Ethics.

The BCUCM is currently offering members of the Urgent Care Association of America (UCAOA) a special rate on fees associated with physician board certification in urgent care medicine. Interested physicians can submit a completed application form along with the application fee by the application deadline. Applicants pay for the base application and written examination fees. To receive the special rate, enter promo code “UCAOA” on the completed application.

In general, allopathic and osteopathic physicians in the United States and Canada who are residency-trained and who currently practice urgent care full-time are eligible to apply for urgent care medicine board certification through the BCUCM.

To learn more about the eligibility requirements for board certification, or for information about the BCUCM, contact the ABPS today. The ABPS is the official certifying body of the American Association of Physician Specialists, Inc.®

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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