Why Is it Important to Become Board Certified in Your Chosen Specialty?

Why Board CertifyPhysician board certification represents an important, even vital, level of achievement for a physician. It demonstrates that she or he has mastered the core competencies and knowledge necessary to provide the best possible medical care. It means that the physician not only is qualified, but is also an ideal candidate for a position in his or her specialty.

There is another reason why it is important to become board certified in a chosen specialty. The rapid transformation of the American medical system reflects the personal reinvention that many physicians undergo throughout their careers. If you are a physician whose career has progressively moved toward a new, unanticipated specialty such as Hospital Medicine, Disaster Medicine, Emergency Medicine, Urgent Care Medicine or Integrative Medicine, it might be time to consider board certification through the American Board of Physician Specialties (ABPS).

Board Certification Benefits Patients

Patients making decisions about where to turn for healing or health maintenance often make their choices based on the credentials of a hospital or clinic’s physicians. Sometimes, patients realize their condition needs specialized care, and they expect medical specialists to have experience in treating specific conditions, whether it’s a torn shoulder ligament or gestational diabetes. This is where physician board certification helps. While a caring doctor with years of training can ease a patient’s worries, board certification remains a trustworthy sign of a doctor’s ability to provide skilled and compassionate care. It confirms that a doctor is exceptionally qualified in their field, giving patients confidence that they’re in capable hands.

Board Certification Rewards Talent and Dedication

Earning board certification is a challenging accomplishment, achieved only by the most skilled and committed specialists. Certified specialists are seen as leaders in their fields and are highly sought-after by employers. By demonstrating their expertise through a rigorous certification process, they open doors for career advancement and higher earnings. While most physicians understand the effect board certification has on career development, the less-obvious benefits include:

  • The respect of their peers and the fellowship of practitioners who share best practice techniques and more
  • Added incentive to remain as updated as possible about new techniques and treatment methods in their chosen specialty in order to achieve recertification
  • An opportunity to be viewed as a leader in their chosen specialty, and to shape the course of the medical profession for years to come

What Are the Eligibility Requirements for ABPS Certification?

The eligibility criteria for ABPS certification vary depending on the specialty, but some general requirements apply to all ABPS Member Boards:

  • Adherence to the ABPS Code of Ethics, known as an ethical member of the profession, and active practice in the desired specialty for certification.
  • Graduation from a recognized U.S., Canadian, or international allopathic or osteopathic medical college.
  • Holding a valid and unrestricted medical license(s) to practice in the United States, U.S. territories, or Canada.

If you’re a licensed physician considering board certification, the ABPS invites you to apply to one of our Member Boards. We’re a nationally recognized certifying body with numerous Diplomates practicing throughout the United States. Our certification options cover a wide range of specialties, from traditional fields like family medicine and dermatology to emerging fields like interventional pain management and integrative medicine. We also offer certification in specialties such as disaster medicine, family medicine obstetrics, and orthopedic surgery, among others.

To learn more about why it is important to achieve physician board certification within your chosen specialty or specialties, contact the ABPS today.

Save the Date
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