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What do the changes mean for you?

Do you hold multiple ABIM certifications or one? Are you new to MOC, or have you participated in the program before? As every diplomate is different, your MOC Status Report at ABIM.org now outlines requirements specific to you.

When do I need to begin meeting MOC requirements...

The new ABIM MOC program requirements began in January 2014 for all diplomates who were ever ABIM Board Certified. For newly certified diplomates, the ABIM MOC program requirements begin in the January after initially certifying in internal medicine.

Certifications earned in 2013 and after (initial certification in internal medicine or a subspecialty) and 2014 and after (Maintenance of Certification) are contingent upon “Meeting MOC Requirements.”

If I have time remaining on my certificate...

  • You will continue to be certified for the length of your current certification(s), assuming you hold a current and valid license. If you hold certification(s) that are valid indefinitely, you will not lose those certifications.
  • ABIM will report you as certified until that certification expires. For all ABIM Board Certified physicians, ABIM also will report whether or not you are “Meeting MOC Requirements” (i.e., continuously engaging in MOC activities).

To be “Meeting MOC Requirements”:

  • “Meeting MOC Requirements” means that a physician is engaged in ABIM-approved self-assessment activities on an ongoing basis. Specifically, the MOC program requirements now include two-and five-year milestones as well as passing an MOC exam 10 years from when it was last passed. To continue to be “Meeting MOC Requirements,” all ABIM Board Certified physicians will need to meet the following requirements:
    • Every two years:
      • Complete at least one ABIM-approved MOC activity to earn points.
    • Every five years:
      • Earn 100 points, with at least 20 points in medical knowledge and 20 points in practice assessment. In addition, you will need to fulfill a patient safety and a patient voice requirement.
        • The points earned every two years will count toward your five-year requirement, and also count toward the milestones for the certifications you are maintaining.
    • Every 10 years:
      • Pass an MOC exam 10 years from when it was last passed.
        • If you attempt the examination and fail prior to the date your current examination is due and, if you are in good standing with all your other MOC requirements at that time, you will have an additional year to pass the examination before your certification status changes.
  • If you were enrolled in the MOC program prior to the program launch in January 2014 and your certification is still valid, when you log in and indicate which certification(s) you are choosing to maintain, you will be “Meeting MOC Requirements.“ You will have a fee credit and will not owe any additional program fees until your current MOC program enrollment expires. This fee credit will cover all MOC components. However, if you take an additional exam, you may incur additional fees. By 12/31/15, you will need to complete an MOC activity to earn MOC points to continue to be “Meeting MOC Requirements.”
  • If you are not currently enrolled in the MOC program and your certificate is valid, to be reported as “Meeting MOC Requirements,” log in and enroll by indicating which certification(s) you choose to maintain. If you do not log in and activate your program by 3/31, you will be reported as “Certified, Not Meeting MOC Requirements.” However, you can change your reported status to “Meeting MOC Requirements” by simply logging in and enrolling in the program. By 12/31/15, you will need to complete an MOC activity to earn MOC points to continue to be “Meeting MOC Requirements.”
  • Only MOC activities completed in 2014 and after will count toward the new “Meeting MOC Requirements” reporting.
  • Points earned for MOC activities completed before 2014 can be applied to the certifications you are maintaining that expire in 2014, 2015, 2016 or 2017. You will still need to complete at least one activity to earn points from January 2014 to 12/31/15 to be “Meeting MOC Requirements” and earn 100 points with at least 20 points in medical knowledge and 20 points in practice assessment by the end of 2018 to continue to be “Meeting MOC Requirements.”
  • Those with certifications expiring in 2018 and beyond will need to earn 100 points with at least 20 points in medical knowledge and 20 points in practice assessment by 12/31/18 to continue to be “Meeting MOC Requirements.”
  • The points earned every two years will count toward your five-year requirement, and also count toward the milestones for the certifications you are maintaining.
    • You can earn MOC points by completing ABIM's own MOC products, and for most other products, at no additional cost, you may be eligible for CME credit. In addition, there are many other activities developed by other organizations that ABIM has approved for MOC credit.
    • You will earn 20 MOC points for your first exam attempt in each certification area, and these points count toward the 100-point requirement.
    • If you are maintaining certification in Interventional Cardiology or Focused Practice in Hospital Medicine, you will need to attest to meeting additional program-specific requirements every five years.
    • Log in to view your MOC Status Report to review your specific MOC program requirements.

What is “the correct distribution?” What does "distributed across key areas" mean?

  • The correct distribution means earning a total of 100 points every five years with at least 20 points in medical knowledge and at least 20 points in practice assessment. In addition, you will need to fulfill a patient safety and a patient voice requirement. The points earned every two years count toward the five-year total.
    • Points can be earned from any of the products ABIM accepts for MOC credit.
    • Points earned in 2014 and after will apply to the two-and five-year milestones for the certificates you chose to maintain and to “Meeting MOC Requirements.”
  • Earn 20 MOC points for each first exam attempt in each certification area (whether you pass or fail). You must pass an exam in each certification area you want to maintain every 10 years.

If I hold more than one ABIM Certification...

  • Log in to view your MOC Status Report to learn your specific MOC program requirements.
  • Follow the steps described above to be "Meeting MOC Requirements."
  • The points you earn will count toward the milestones for all certifications you are choosing to maintain. You will still need to pass an MOC exam for each specialty you have selected to maintain.
  • Only MOC activities completed in 2014 and after will count toward the new "Meeting MOC Requirements" reporting.
  • Points earned for MOC activities completed before 2014 can be applied to the certifications you are maintaining that expire in 2014, 2015, 2016 or 2017. You will still need to earn points every two years to be "Meeting MOC Requirements" and 100 points with at least 20 points in medical knowledge and 20 points in practice assessment within five years to continue to be "Meeting MOC Requirements."
  • Those with certifications expiring in 2018 and beyond will need to earn 100 points with at least 20 points in medical knowledge and 20 points in practice assessment by 12/31/18 to continue to be "Meeting MOC Requirements."
    • If you are maintaining certification in Interventional Cardiology or Focused Practice in Hospital Medicine, you will need to continue to attest to meeting additional program-specific requirements.
    • You will receive MOC points for each first exam attempt per certification area being maintained.

If my certification expired in 2013...

  • If you completed your existing program requirements by 12/31/13, you received a new 10-year certificate that will expire in 2023.
  • If you did not complete your existing requirements by 12/31/13, your certification has lapsed. You can complete your requirements to receive a new certificate, the ongoing validity of which is contingent upon "Meeting MOC Requirements."
  • If you are currently not enrolled in the MOC program, your certification has lapsed. You need to enroll in MOC by logging in and indicating which certification areas you are choosing to maintain. You must meet your existing program requirements to reinstate your lapsed certification(s) before you can be "Meeting MOC Requirements." If all your program requirements are met, you will receive a new certificate, the ongoing validity of which is contingent upon "Meeting MOC Requirements." Follow the steps described above to be "Meeting MOC Requirements" in 2014 and after.
  • If you are maintaining certification in Interventional Cardiology or Focused Practice in Hospital Medicine, you will need to continue to attest to meeting additional program-specific requirements.

If my certification expires in 2014...

  • Log in to view your MOC Status Report to learn your specific MOC program requirements.
    • You will continue to be certified for the length of your current certification(s), assuming you hold a current and valid license.
    • Meet your existing program requirements by 12/31/14. Note that any points earned prior to 2014 will only count toward the 100 points you need to maintain your certification(s) and will not count toward the new "Meeting MOC Requirements" reporting.
    • Any MOC activity you complete in 2014 and after will count toward your certification(s) expiring in 2014 AND to be "Meeting MOC Requirements."
    • If you were enrolled in MOC before the MOC changes took effect in 2014, you will have a fee credit for the balance of the enrollment fee that you paid. This fee credit will cover all MOC components (unless you previously used your exam credit). You will not owe any additional program fees until your current MOC program enrollment expires and you will be “Meeting MOC Requirements” in 2014. However, if you take an additional exam, you may incur additional fees.
    • If you were not enrolled in MOC by 8/1/14, your certification will lapse on 12/31/14. To be reported as “Meeting MOC Requirements” you must first log in and enroll, and complete all outstanding requirements for the time-limited certification that expired on 12/31/14. When you requirements are met, your certification will be reinstated. You will receive a new certificate, the ongoing validity is contingent upon “Meeting MOC Requirements.”
    • If you are maintaining certification in Interventional Cardiology or Focused Practice in Hospital Medicine, you will need to continue to attest to meeting additional program-specific requirements.
    • You will need to pass your next exam 10 years from when you last passed.

If my certification expires in 2015...

  • Log in to view your MOC Status Report to learn your specific MOC program requirements.
    • You will continue to be certified for the length of your current certification(s), assuming you hold a current and valid license.
    • Meet your existing program requirements by 12/31/15. Note that any points earned prior to 2014 will only count toward the 100 points you need to maintain your certification(s) and will not count toward the new "Meeting MOC Requirements" reporting.
    • Any MOC activity you complete in 2014 and after will count toward your certification(s) expiring in 2015 AND to be "Meeting MOC Requirements."
    • If you were enrolled in MOC before the MOC changes took effect in 2014, you will have a fee credit for the balance of the enrollment fee that you paid. This fee credit will cover all MOC components (unless you previously used your exam credit). You will not owe any additional program fees until your current MOC program enrollment expires and you will be "Meeting MOC Requirements" in early 2014. However, if you take an additional exam, you may incur additional fees.
    • If you are not enrolled in MOC, to be reported as "Meeting MOC Requirements," log in to ABIM.org and enroll by indicating which certification(s) you choose to maintain. If you did not log in and activate your program by 3/31, you will be reported as "Certified, Not Meeting MOC Requirements." However, you can change your reported status to "Meeting MOC Requirements" by simply logging in and enrolling in the program.
    • If you are maintaining certification in Interventional Cardiology or Focused Practice in Hospital Medicine, you will need to continue to attest to meeting additional program-specific requirements.
    • If all your program requirements are met, upon expiration of each time-limited certification you are maintaining you will receive a new certificate, the ongoing validity of which is contingent upon "Meeting MOC Requirements."
    • You will need to pass your next exam 10 years from when you last passed.

If my certification expires in 2016...

  • Log in to view your MOC Status Report to learn your specific MOC program requirements.
    • You will continue to be certified for the length of your current certification(s), assuming you hold a current and valid license.
    • Meet your existing program requirements by 12/31/16. Note that any points earned prior to 2014 will only count toward the 100 points you need to maintain your certification(s) and will not count toward the new "Meeting MOC Requirements" reporting.
    • Any MOC activity you complete in 2014 and after will count toward your certification(s) expiring in 2016 AND to be "Meeting MOC Requirements."
    • If you were enrolled in MOC before the MOC changes took effect in 2014, you will have a fee credit for the balance of the enrollment fee that you paid. This fee credit will cover all MOC components (unless you previously used your exam credit). You will not owe any additional program fees until your current MOC program enrollment expires and you will be "Meeting MOC Requirements" in 2014. However, if you take an additional exam, you may incur additional fees.
    • If you are not enrolled in MOC, to be reported as "Meeting MOC Requirements," log in to ABIM.org and enroll by indicating which certification(s) you choose to maintain. If you did not log in and activate your program by 3/31, you will reported as "Certified, Not Meeting MOC Requirements." However, you can change your reported status to "Meeting MOC Requirements" by simply logging in and enrolling in the program.
    • If you are maintaining certification in Interventional Cardiology or Focused Practice in Hospital Medicine, you will need to continue to attest to meeting additional program-specific requirements.
    • If all your program requirements are met, upon expiration of each time-limited certification you are maintaining you will receive a new certificate, the ongoing validity of which is contingent upon "Meeting MOC Requirements."
    • You will need to pass your next exam 10 years from when you last passed.

If my certification expires in 2017...

  • Log in to view your MOC Status Report to learn your specific MOC program requirements.
    • You will continue to be certified for the length of your current certification(s), assuming you hold a current and valid license.
    • Meet your existing program requirements by 12/31/17. Note that any points earned prior to 2014 will only count toward the 100 points you need to maintain your certification(s) and will not count toward the new "Meeting MOC Requirements" reporting.
    • Any MOC activity you complete in 2014 and after will count toward toward your certification(s) expiring in 2017 you are maintaining AND to be "Meeting MOC Requirements."
    • If you were enrolled in MOC before the MOC changes took effect in 2014, you have receive a fee credit for the balance of the enrollment fee that you paid. This fee credit will cover all MOC components (unless you previously used your exam credit). You will not owe any additional program fees until your current MOC program enrollment expires and you will be "Meeting MOC Requirements" in 2014. However, if you take an additional exam, you may incur additional fees.
    • If you are not enrolled in MOC, to be reported as "Meeting MOC Requirements," log in to ABIM.org and enroll by indicating which certification(s) you choose to maintain. If you did not log in and activate your program by 3/31, you will be reported as "Certified, Not Meeting MOC Requirements." However, you can change your reported status to "Meeting MOC Requirements" by simply logging in and enrolling in the program.
    • If you are maintaining certification in Interventional Cardiology or Focused Practice in Hospital Medicine, you will need to continue to attest to meeting additional program-specific requirements.
    • If all your program requirements are met, upon expiration of each time-limited certification you are maintaining you will receive a new certificate, the ongoing validity of which is contingent upon "Meeting MOC Requirements."
    • You will need to pass your next exam 10 years from when you last passed.

If my certification expires 2018 or beyond...

  • Log in to view your MOC Status Report to learn your specific MOC program requirements.
    • You will continue to be certified for the length of your current certification(s), assuming you hold a current and valid license.
    • Follow the steps described above to be "Meeting MOC Requirements" in 2014 and after.
      • Any points you earned prior to 2014 will not count toward maintaining certifications expiring 2018 or beyond. To maintain certifications expiring 2018 and beyond and to be ”Meeting MOC Requirements” you will need to earn points during the two- and five-year milestone cycles. Every 10 years, you’ll also need to pass a secure exam.
  • The points earned every two years will count toward your five-year requirement, and also count toward the milestones for the certifications you are maintaining.
    • If you do not meet the 100-point requirement by 12/31/18, but still have time left on your certificate, you will be reported as “Certified, Not Meeting MOC Requirements.”
    • If you were enrolled in MOC before the MOC changes took effect in 2014, you will have a fee credit for the balance of the enrollment fee that you paid. This fee credit will cover all MOC components (unless you previously used your exam credit). You will not owe any additional program fees until your current MOC program enrollment expires and you will be “Meeting MOC Requirements” in 2014. However, if you take an additional exam, you may incur additional fees.
    • If you are not enrolled in MOC, to be reported as “Meeting MOC Requirements,” log in to ABIM.org and enroll by indicating which certification(s) you choose to maintain. If you did not log in and activate your program by 3/31, you will be reported as “Certified, Not Meeting MOC Requirements.” However, you can change your reported status to "Meeting MOC Requirements" by simply logging in and enrolling in the program.
    • If you are maintaining certification in Interventional Cardiology or Focused Practice in Hospital Medicine, you will need to continue to attest to meeting additional program-specific requirements.
    • If all your program requirements are met, upon expiration of each time-limited certification you are maintaining you will receive a new certificate, the ongoing validity of which is contingent upon “Meeting MOC Requirements.”

If I became newly certified in Internal Medicine...

  • When you have passed your exam, a certificate will be issued, the ongoing validity of which is contingent upon “Meeting MOC Requirements.”
  • Anyone newly certified in Internal Medicine will receive a waiver of their annual MOC fee for the year after they pass the Internal Medicine Certification Exam. Example, physicians who passed the Internal Medicine Certification Exam in 2014, will receive a waiver of their annual MOC fee for 2015
  • You will need to enroll by March 31, and indicate that you are maintaining your Internal Medicine certification. When you enroll, your waiver will be applied.
  • If you do not enroll by March 31, you will be reported as “Certified, Not Meeting MOC Requirements.”
  • Once enrolled, you will have access to all of ABIM's modules at no additional cost. These modules offer you an opportunity to earn points and CME.
  • Check your MOC Status Report at least annually for your specific MOC program requirements and deadlines.
  • Note: if you miss the March 31 deadline, you can still enroll at anytime thereafter and your certification status will be reported as “Certified, Meeting MOC Requirements.”
  • To remain valid, certification requires ongoing demonstration of competence through the ABIM MOC program.
  • You will need to pass your next exam 10 years from when you last passed.

If I became newly certified in a subspecialty...

  • When you have passed your exam, a new certificate will be issued, the ongoing validity of which is contingent upon “Meeting MOC Requirements.”
  • To remain valid, certification requires ongoing demonstration of competence through the ABIM MOC program.
  • You will need to enroll in the MOC program and select the subspecialty area you just earned by March 31, in order to continue to be reported as “Certified, Meeting MOC Requirements.”
  • If you do not enroll by March 31, you will not be certified in that subspecialty.
  • Once enrolled, you will have access to all of ABIM's modules at no additional cost. These modules offer you an opportunity to earn points and CME.
  • Check your MOC Status Report at least annually for your specific MOC program requirements and deadlines.
  • Note: if you miss the March 31 deadline, you can still enroll at anytime thereafter and your certification status will be reported as “Certified, Meeting MOC Requirements.”
  • You will need to pass your next exam 10 years from when you last passed.

If I'm in a fellowship program...

  • If you are in a fellowship program in the 2014 calendar year and after, you may have to pay the MOC fee (annual or 10-year prepayment) in 2014 unless you were previously enrolled in MOC or you initially certified in Internal Medicine in 2013 (in which case, you will receive a fee waiver for being newly certified). Fellowship years completed before 2014 are not eligible.
  • Upon completion of each eligible fellowship year and ABIM's receipt of your evaluation from your program director, you will receive 20 MOC points, which will be credited immediately on your Self-Evaluation Activity Report in Physician Log-in and a one-year fee credit. These 20 points will be credited to: 10 points in medical knowledge and 10 points in practice assessment.
  • For fellowships completed in 2014, the fee credit and points won’t be applied until the 2015 calendar year at the earliest because the credit application is contingent upon ABIM's receipt of your evaluation from your program director. These evaluations come to ABIM via our FasTrack system. No action on your part is required.
  • Once ABIM receives your evaluation from your program director for every eligible year of ACGME-accredited fellowship training successfully completed in 2014 and after, you will be able to apply this credit during the fee renewal period in November.
  • You will need to log on and select the certificates you are going to maintain through the enrollment process.
  • The credit will then be deducted and you will not owe a payment at this time.
  • Log in to view your MOC Status Report to learn your specific MOC program requirements.

If I earned a “Certificate Contingent Upon Meeting MOC Requirements”...

  • When all your program requirements are met, a new certificate will be issued, the ongoing validity of which is contingent upon “Meeting MOC Requirements.”
  • To remain valid, certification requires ongoing demonstration of competence through the ABIM MOC program.
  • You will need to pass your next exam 10 years from when you last passed.
  • If you are maintaining certification in Interventional Cardiology or Focused Practice in Hospital Medicine, you will need to continue to attest to meeting additional program-specific requirements.

If I hold certification that is valid indefinitely...

  • Log in to view your MOC Status Report to learn your specific MOC program requirements.
    • ABIM will honor all certifications already issued, and diplomates who received certifications that are valid indefinitely will remain certified (assuming you hold a current and valid license).
    • However, for all ABIM Board Certified physicians, regardless of when they were initially certified, ABIM will begin reporting whether or not they are “Meeting MOC Requirements.”
    • In order to be reported as “Meeting MOC Requirements,” diplomates with a certification that is valid indefinitely will need to pass the MOC exam in their certification area by 12/31/23. This is in addition to continuing to meet the point requirements of the MOC program (including the two- and five-year milestones). Diplomates with a certification that is valid indefinitely will not have to pass an exam to remain certified.
    • Diplomates with a certification that is valid indefinitely who miss any of the MOC program requirements will be reported as “Certified, Not Meeting MOC Requirements.” They will NOT be reported as “Not Certified” for failing to meet MOC requirements.
  • If you are not enrolled in MOC, to be reported as "Meeting MOC Requirements," log in to ABIM.org and enroll by indicating which certification(s) you choose to maintain.
  • If you were enrolled in MOC before the MOC changes take effect in 2014, you will have a fee credit for the balance of the enrollment fee that you paid. This fee credit will cover all MOC components (unless you previously used your exam credit). You will not owe any additional program fees until your current MOC program enrollment expires and you will be “Meeting MOC Requirements” in 2014. However, if you take an additional exam, you may incur additional fees.

If I'm not currently working in a clinical setting...

  • If you currently do not provide patient care, have no direct or indirect supervisory responsibilities for patient care, and have no administrative responsibility for patient care (e.g., serving as a department chair), you may be able to complete an alternative activity to meet your MOC requirements. Examples include physicians whose work is purely research-based or who work for a company that produces health care goods or services (e.g., pharmaceutical, medical device, health information technology or health insurance companies).
  • To find out what options are available for your unique situation, e-mail request@abim.org or call 1-800-441-ABIM (2246).

If my certification is lapsed...

  • If your certification has already expired, you will need to complete your existing program requirements to receive a new certificate, the ongoing validity of which is contingent upon “Meeting MOC Requirements.”
  • Log in to view your MOC Status Report to see what you need to do to reinstate your lapsed certification(s). Once you have reinstated your certification(s), your MOC Status Report will tell you what you need to do to maintain your certification(s) and to be “Meeting MOC Requirements.”
  • If you are currently enrolled in MOC, when you log in and indicate which certifications you are choosing to maintain, you will have a fee credit and will not owe any additional program fees until your current MOC program enrollment expires. This fee credit will cover all MOC components (unless you previously used your exam credit). However, if you take an additional exam, you may incur additional fees.
  • If you are not enrolled in MOC, you will need to log in and enroll by indicating which certification(s) you are choosing to maintain.

I passed my exam early before the new MOC requirements were launched in 2014, when do I need to pass it again?

  • If you passed your exam early for a new certification you will earn after 2014 through 2017, you will have until 10 years from when your new certificate is issued to pass your next exam.
    • For example:
      • Earned initial certification or MOC certification in 2006, certification expires 2016
      • Passed last MOC exam early, in 2013 (exam requirement has been met before 2016 certification expired)
      • Will be issued a new must-be-maintained certificate in 2016 (provided all other requirements are met), which will remain valid as long as MOC requirements continue to be met.
      • Must pass exam again by 2026 (10 years from when new certificate is issued)
      • If the next exam is passed early (before 2026), and all other MOC requirements are met (no lapsing in-between), the next exam will be due 10 years from that year.
  • If you passed your exam early to earn a time-limited certification that expires 2014-2023, you will have until the year your certification expires to pass the exam again.
    • For example:
      • Passed last MOC exam early, in 2005
      • Earned an MOC certification in 2006, certification expires 2016
      • Must pass exam again by 2016 (when current certification expires)
      • If exam is passed early (before 2016), and all other MOC requirements are met (no lapsing in-between), the next exam will be due 10 years from that year.
  • Note: If you passed your exam in 2014 or later, you will have 10 years from your last pass date to pass the exam again.

What is the Patient Safety requirement?

What is the Patient Voice requirement?

  • Patient Voice, formerly referred to as the patient survey requirement, is an every five-year MOC requirement. It is designed to ensure physicians recognize the importance of patient engagement and incorporate the values and preferences of patients and their families in decision making.
  • The options for meeting the requirement will include many activities in which physicians are already employing in their practice: patient surveys, educational and training programs in patient communication, active participation in patient/family advisory panels and use of shared decision making tools.
  • Pathways to approve and give credit for these activities will be rolled out over the next few years, well before the requirement is first due in 2018.
  • These pathways will also support retroactive credit, so a physician will be able to meet the requirement via an approved activity completed between 2014 and 2018.
  • See a list of activities that satisfy this requirement.