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From Pilot to Permanent: ABOG's Program Offering an Innovative Pathway Integrating Lifelong Learning and Self-Assessment and External Assessment Is Approved

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SOURCE American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology

DALLAS, May 15, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- The American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology (ABOG) received approval recently from the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) to make its Maintenance of Certification (MOC) pilot program a permanent option for ABOG Diplomates.

ABO+G logo (PRNewsfoto/American Board of Obstetrics an)

ABOG launched its pilot program in January 2016 based on its objective to enhance MOC relevance to specialty and subspecialty practices.  If Diplomates meet the high performance threshold determined by ABOG on the Part II: Lifelong Learning and Self-Assessment (LLSA) component in Years 1 through 6 of the MOC cycle, they can receive credit for meeting the MOC external assessment requirement (Part III: Assessment of Knowledge, Judgment, and Skills). The MOC external assessment requirement is usually met by passing a computer-based examination in MOC Year 6.

"We developed a unique way to integrate LLSA and the MOC Year-6 exam by combining annual self-assessment and periodic external assessment. This integration of assessments creates an innovative pathway to meet both standards by high performance on LLSA," said Dr. Susan Ramin, ABOG's Associate Executive Director of the MOC program.

Diplomates must also continue to meet other MOC standards, including the annual MOC Professionalism and Professional Standing requirements (e.g., maintaining an unrestricted medical license and institutional privileges). Upon entering Year 6, Diplomates will receive notification that they qualify for the new pathway on their personal page in the ABOG physician portal if they have met all requirements.  Diplomates who do not meet the eligibility requirements will continue to meet the external assessment standard by passing the MOC examination.

ABOG's LLSA is a unique program focused on maintaining knowledge of new and important changes in obstetrics, gynecology, and women's health care. It is an article-based self-assessment (with corresponding questions) and showcases new studies, practice guidelines, recommendations, and up-to-date reviews.

The LLSA program requires that all OB GYN specialists and subspecialists read a total of 180 selected articles and answer 720 questions about the articles over the 6-year MOC cycle. After completing LLSA requirements each year, a Diplomate also earns 25 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™ (CME hours) from the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG).

Based on 2016 and 2017 survey feedback of Year-6 Diplomates, an overwhelming majority (90%) view the LLSA component of MOC as "extremely relevant" or "relevant" to their practice.

"Making the pilot program a permanent option for our Diplomates is a huge step in advancing the strategic direction for ABOG and our specialty," said Dr. Ramin.   Diplomates can now keep up with important changes in OB GYN and emerging topics, such as Zika virus, in real-time and demonstrate their learning and knowledge continuously rather than periodically. 

"One of our primary principles for MOC is to maintain a high-quality fund of knowledge for our Diplomates to help them provide up-to-date care, and through the LLSA component, we are doing this. With the permanent adoption of the pilot, we're also meeting another of our MOC principles, which is to limit costs of MOC for our Diplomates," Ramin added.  Diplomates who meet the LLSA performance threshold and elect to receive credit for the external assessment will realize savings by not paying the external assessment fees. Another direct benefit is not losing a full day away from their practices and patients in order to fulfill the external assessment requirement.

"ABOG is an excellent example of the ABMS Boards Community's commitment to develop and offer new and innovative approaches to assessment that better meet the needs of today's physicians and their practices," said Richard E. Hawkins, MD, ABMS President and Chief Executive Officer. "ABOG has worked closely with ABMS throughout its pilot to ensure that its new assessment program brings value to physicians in supporting their learning and improvement needs while providing the high standards expected of our certification programs by the public."

ABOG's new program goes into permanent status in January 2019. Read ABOG's FAQs or contact moc@abog.org with inquiries.

About ABOG

The American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology (ABOG) is an independent, non-profit organization that certifies obstetricians and gynecologists in the United States. Founded in 1930, ABOG is one of 24 specialty Boards recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties. Based in Dallas, ABOG is the certifying body for 40,000 diplomates in the United States and Canada, and it offers and administers a Maintenance of Certification program.

 

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