What does “participating in MOC” mean?
Participating in MOC means that a physician is committed to and engaged in the assessment and learning activities required by his or her certifying board(s) to improve the effectiveness, safety, and efficiency of their practices. The physician’s certifying board(s) determines whether a physician is in compliance.
How is MOC participation displayed in the ABMS Board Certification Credentials Profile?
The “Participating in Maintenance of Certification (MOC)” display includes the status of all a physician’s specialty (and subspecialty, if any) certificates from an ABMS Member Board. For each certificate listed, either “Yes”, “No” or “Not Required” is shown to indicate status.
What does each of the status designations in the Profile mean?
- “Yes” status indicates the physician is engaged in the MOC assessment and learning activities required by his or her certifying Member Board(s).
- “No” status may be listed due to a variety of reasons. For example, a physician may have chosen not to participate in MOC. Or, the physician may be participating, but not meeting the Member Board(s) MOC program requirements. More information is available from the particular ABMS Member Board.
- “Not required” status indicates that the physician became board certified before the Member Board established its MOC program and is therefore not required to participate. This is noted in a disclaimer at the bottom of the profile page.
What if the “participating in MOC” information is missing from the Profile?
If the participation status information is missing, the physician’s certifying Member Board(s) has not made it available to ABMS. Examples of why the information has not been provided to ABMS could include technical issues, delays in confirming the MOC status of a board certified physician, or other factors specific to the physician. ABMS will display publicly whether that physician is participating in MOC as soon as it receives the information from his or her certifying board(s).
If a physician is not participating in MOC, does that mean they are not or cannot be certified?
Physicians with time-limited certificates from an ABMS Member Board who are not participating in MOC will remain board certified until the time on their certificate expires according to the certifying board’s policy. The physician’s Board Certification Credentials Profile will show “No” for Participating in MOC. The Profile also will indicate a certificate that has expired when that date has passed.
Physicians with board certifications from ABMS Member Boards that have eliminated end dates in favor of a Continuing MOC process could have the status of their certificate changed (according to board policy) if 1) he or she is not participating in MOC, 2) has exhausted any grace periods related to participation, and 3) is at the end of the cycle set by the Member Board.
With regard to physicians who have non-time limited certificates, participation in MOC is strongly encouraged by their certifying Member Boards. For more information, call the Member Board regarding their particular policy.
When does ABMS update the information in its certification database?
The information in the ABMS certification database is supplied by the Member Boards according to their established schedule. The database is refreshed daily but occurs only after the information received from the Member Boards is thoroughly reviewed and verified by ABMS for completeness and accuracy. Once this process is complete, the information is incorporated into the database and made accessible through ABMS Solutions’ products and ABMS licensee partners. The information is displayed within the ABMS Board Certification Credentials Profile, which is officially recognized as primary source documentation by the Joint Commission, NCQA, URAC and other key accrediting agencies.
- In the case of newly certified physicians, the certifying Member Board submits information within two weeks of when the physician is formally notified, or the physician’s certification status is publicly displayed.
- Information about a physician’s MOC status is provided by the certifying Member Board according to their established MOC cycle.
- Physicians also may make a request of their certifying Member Board to update personal information in their record, such as a name change or home or business address. The Member Board provides this information to ABMS.