ACOG Recertification http://exampro.

Dr. Alvin Schamroth The new Maintenance of Certification process (MOC) began in January 2008 and has several implications that will affect virtually all practicing Ob/Gyns. There are 4 parts to the process, but the 3rd component (Cognitive Expertise) is the one causing most anxiety! Why? Because this is a ‘closed book’ MCQ written test for which the candidate must obtain a passing score in order to maintain his/her certification! The requirement to take this exam is dictated by the year of initial Ob/Gyn certification. Those who became board certified in general Ob/Gyn between 1986 and 2001 received certification valid for 10 years. From 2001, certification was given for only 6 years. Thus, beginning in 2008, anyone who became board certified since 1986 is required to register for MOC. Those who were certified prior to 1986 are ‘grandfathered in’ and have no obligation to complete the MOC process. This exam is expected by many to be somewhat similar to the written board exam, but more clinically focused. ABOG states that “the primary goal of MOC Part III Written Examination, is to ensure that “diplomates have retained and are currently employing basic information learned during their training as well as the new information obtained by their participation in the MOC Part II - Lifetime Education process.”1 It is thus reasonable to assume that much of the MOC Part 3 exam will be based on articles (and related topics) previously prescribed by ABOG for the Annual Board Certification exam (or ABC: MOC Part 2). Most physicians are currently enrolled in the ABC Part 2 MOC and are consequently familiar with these articles and the associated ‘open book’ test of MOC Part 2. It is worthwhile noting that although only 2 of 3 sets of ABC articles are required for qualification in MOC Part 2 (with 120 related questions), physicians may voluntarily choose to now complete all 3 books with 180 questions (as preparation for the MOC Part 3 exam). It is critical to appreciate that the MOC process cycles through a 6 year period and the Cognitive Expertise (MOC Part 3) portion is taken only once during that 6 year period. A physician has the option to take it in the 5th or 6th year of the cycle. That makes 2012 the first opportunity for most Ob/Gyns to sit for the exam. A candidate may take the exam as often as is necessary during the 5th and 6thyear in order to pass (ABOG anticipates offering the exam twice per year). It is thus expected that most physicians will opt to take the exam in the 5th year of the 6 year cycle (recommended by ABOG) so as to give themselves

ample time to have a 2nd or even 3rdopportunity to take the exam, should this become necessary. The written exam is expected to have 180-200 questions to be completed in 3-4 hours (specifics still pending). Of the approximately 180 questions, 100 are mandatory in the area of general Ob/Gyn. The balance of 80 questions will be derived from one of four categories (OB, GYN, Office or General Ob/Gyn) and may be selected by the candidates. This is designed to accommodate candidates who have narrowed their scope of practice. For example, a urogynecologist would probably select the remaining 80 questions to come from the GYN section, an MFM specialist would choose those 80 questions from the OB section etc Candidates for the 2012 exam must apply for MOC Part 3 online, in October or November 2011. A fee will be charged. ABOG has not yet announced whether they will publish any study guides to assist those preparing for this exam. ABOG does acknowledge that final details surrounding the exam may change as it is a ‘work in progress’. Candidates who fail the MOC Part 3 exam will not be board certified until they successfully complete the exam. This will result in a hiatus in their certification status! It is the candidate’s responsibility to make sure that he/she maintains his/her certification. Neither ABOG nor ACOG will contact physicians to initiate the process! For those with specific questions, further information relating to MOC may be obtained by contacting: Maintenance of Certification Department The American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Inc. 2915 Vine Street Dallas, TX 75204 E-mail: Phone: (214) 721-7510 The slides of a lecture given by Dr Gilstrap (ABOG’s Director of Evaluation) introducing details of the MOC Process can be found online at the following URL address: %20Simplified.pdf Important dates to be aware of, (for General Ob/Gyn MOC registration, 2009) are: Feb 26: Application + $235 fee Feb 27 – Jun 30: Application, fee + late fee ($110.00) = $345 Jul 1 – Aug 31: Application, fee + late fee ($220.00) = $455 Sep 1 – 29: Application, fee + late fee ($330.00) = $565

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