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AMA adopts principles for maintenance of certification

(from the AMA Wire)

At the AMA Interim Meeting Nov. 10, physicians voted to update the AMA’s policy on maintenance of certification (MOC). The adopted policy outlines principles that emphasize the need for an evidence-based process that is evaluated regularly to ensure physician needs are being met and activities are relevant to clinical practice.

The MOC principles will now include:

– MOC should be based on evidence and designed to identify performance gaps and unmet needs, providing direction and guidance for improvement in physician performance and delivery of care.

– The MOC process should be evaluated periodically to measure physician satisfaction, knowledge uptake, and intent to maintain or change practice.

– MOC should be used as a tool for continuous improvement.

– The MOC program should not be a mandated requirement for licensure, credentialing, payment, network participation or employment.

– Actively practicing physicians should be well-represented on specialty boards developing MOC.

– MOC activities and measurement should be relevant to clinical practice.

– The MOC process should not be cost-prohibitive or present barriers to patient care.

The policy encourages specialty boards to investigate alternative approaches to MOC and directs the AMA to report annually on the MOC process.

The American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) is the organization responsible for developing the MOC process. ABMS works with its 24 member boards in the ongoing evaluation and certification of physicians.

AMA policy supports physician accountability, life-long learning and self-assessment. The AMA will continue to work with the appropriate organizations to ensure the MOC process does not disrupt physician practice or reduce the capacity of the overall physician workforce.

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