Built Upon Professional Standards

ABMS is focused on the physician workforce and its preparedness for the provision of care. For more than 80 years, we’ve evolved the standards for medical specialty practice and certification to support advancements in medicine, science, and technology. As a community of learners and leaders, we periodically evaluate and update our professional and educational standards to reflect the changes in medical specialty practice and health care delivery processes.

Physicians meet the Standards for Initial Certification in order to become board certified. Additionally, there are standards that guide the ABMS Program for Maintenance of Certification (ABMS MOC®), which are patient-centric with a greater emphasis on professionalism, patient safety, and performance improvement. The Standards for the ABMS Program for MOC help physicians become active participants in the evaluation of their own practices. Physicians can see how their practice compares to those of their peers, how it differs from published best practices, and how their own practice evolves over time, progressing toward the ideal practice.

The latest evolution of the MOC standards also include guidelines that help the ABMS boards select learning programs and improvement activities, create assessment and evaluation systems, and pioneer effective new pathways for physicians to learn the latest innovations in their specialty.