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Cardiologists Participating in the ABIM/ACC Collaborative Maintenance Pathway Have Extra Time to Complete 2021 Requirements. Learn More.

ACC and ABIM are providing a new option to offer cardiologists more choice, relevance and convenience in meeting the assessment requirement of the Maintenance of Certification (MOC) program. The shared goal is to continually improve all educational and assessment processes for physicians to stay current in knowledge and practice – ultimately in the service of better patient care. This assessment option, called the Collaborative Maintenance Pathway (CMP), was introduced in cardiovascular disease in 2019, and it integrates lifelong learning with assessment.

You can participate in the ACC CMP if:

  • You are currently certified by ABIM and not in an ABIM exam grace period
  • It is offered in your specialty
    • 2019: Launched in Cardiovascular Disease
    • 2020: Launched in Clinical Cardiac Electrophysiology, Interventional Cardiology, and Advanced Heart Failure and Transplant Cardiology
  • You are not currently registered for an ABIM assessment

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What About the CMP for Other Cardiovascular Sub-Specialties?

In addition to Cardiovascular Disease, the CMP is available in three additional sub-specialties:

  • Interventional Cardiology will offer a CMP through CathSAP, developed in collaboration with the Society for Cardiovascular Angiography & Interventions (SCAI).
  • Clinical Cardiac Electrophysiology will offer a CMP through EP SAP.
  • Advanced Heart Failure and Transplant Cardiology will offer a CMP through Heart Failure SAP, developed in collaboration with the Heart Failure Society of America (HFSA).

How Exactly Will the CMP Work?

To participate in the CMP, you must:

  1. Be currently certified by ABIM and not in an MOC exam grace period. (You can check your certification status by signing in to your ABIM Physician Portal.)
  2. Purchase the relevant SAP. Your purchase provides you with five years of access.
  3. Enroll in the CMP. To enroll, visit www.ACC.org/CMPEnroll
  4. Spend seven or more hours “engaging” in the topic covered by the CMP Performance Assessment. This means you need to spend at least seven hours:
    1. Reading the text, watching/listening to presentations and/or completing practice questions.
    2. Completing all of the practice questions and answering at least 70% of them correctly (you may answer as many times as necessary to achieve that score).
    3. The relevant SAPs will automatically track your online engagement hours so you do not need to keep track of them. Please note that you must be online in order for your engagement hours to count. If you download audio files and listen to them offline, that time will not be counted.
  5. Take a Performance Assessment (PA). Each CMP SAP will feature a total of three PAs during 2020 / 2021, and you may participate in any two of them. If your assessment is due, you only need to pass one PA, but please keep in mind that if you want two chances to pass, you must participate in either the first or second PA. If you miss or skip them both, then you will only have one opportunity to pass with the third PA. 

    Your performance will be sent to ABIM annually in order to accurately report whether or not you continue to meet your ABIM assessment requirement.

  6. Repeat steps 4 and 5 each year.

How Do I Participate In the Cardiovascular Disease CMP?

To participate in the CMP, you must:

  1. Be currently certified by the ABIM and not in an MOC exam grace period.You can check your certification status by signing in to your ABIM Physician Portal.
  2. Purchase the relevant SAP. Your purchase provides you with five years of access.
  3. Enroll in the CMP. To enroll, visit www.ACC.org/CMPEnroll
  4. Spend seven or more hours “engaging” in the topic covered by the CMP Performance Assessment. This means you need to spend at least seven hours:
    1. Reading the text, watching/listening to presentations and/or completing practice questions.
    2. Completing the practice questions and answering at least 70% of them correctly (you may answer as many times as necessary to achieve that score).
  5. Take Performance Assessment (PA). It is anticipated that you will receive your results immediately, plus a study guide that you can use to close any knowledge gaps identified by the assessment.

  6. Repeat steps 4 and 5 each year.

What Are the Differences between the CMP, ABIM's Knowledge Check-In, and the traditional MOC exam?

  CMP Performance Assessment
(yearly assessment)
Knowledge Check-In
(2-year assessment)
Traditional MOC exam
Required Frequency Yearly Every 2 Years Every 10 Years
Location At home or workplace At home, workplace or test center Test center only
Available in Cardiovascular Disease

Interventional Cardiology

Clinical Cardiac Electrophysiology

Advanced Heart Failure and Transplant Cardiology
Cardiovascular Disease

Interventional Cardiology

Clinical Cardiac Electrophysiology

Advanced Heart Failure and Transplant Cardiology
Cardiovascular Disease

Interventional Cardiology

Clinical Cardiac Electrophysiology

Advanced Heart Failure and Transplant Cardiology
Assessment Experience (security) Two-factor identity verification

(not recorded or proctored)
Recorded & spot-checked

(not live proctored)
Recorded with in-person proctoring
Learning Materials Included Yes – educational text, presentations, and 600+ practice questions No No
Open Book Yes, through the SAP learning material. Access to UptoDate® Access to UptoDate®
Immediate Results Immediate preliminary score; final score within 30 days. Yes, and full results within 3 – 4 weeks of administration No, within 3 months of administration
Scheduling Available On average, 2 one-week windows.

No need to schedule; take at your convenience during the testing window
4–6 times a year

Scheduling required
2 times a year

Scheduling required
Breadth of Discipline Covered 20% of the field is covered in each year’s performance assessment. 100% of the field is covered. 100% of the field is covered.
Points Each CMP SAP offers 50 to 160 CME/MOC Medical Knowledge points. You may claim as many as you need each year. Earn up to 60 medical knowledge points over a five-year period for each area of certification maintained (20 medical knowledge points for each assessment attempt). 20 medical knowledge points for every assessment attempt
Length 7 hours of learning to access performance assessment

2 hours to complete performance assessment

(2 minutes per question)
About 3 hours will be allotted

(approximately 2 minutes per question)
Same as current length- full day of testing

(approximately 2 minutes per question)

Will the CMP Cover the Breadth of My Discipline or Be More Targeted?

Each year’s CMP Performance Assessment (PA) will cover approximately 20% of the field. The table below outlines the topics to be tested over the next five years within each SAP. Each topic’s corresponding text and practice questions will be thoroughly updated in the year of its PA. However, you will always have access to all learning materials and practice questions in the entire SAP product so you can use the SAP as a reference tool. Only the PA will be available in increments by topic or topic grouping.

CMP Chart

Can I Take the CMP and Should I Try It?

If you are currently certified by ABIM, and you are not in an MOC exam grace period, you can try the CMP! Three reasons to try it include:

  1. If your certification expires in 2020/2021 in Clinical Cardiac Electrophysiology, Interventional Cardiology or Advanced Heart Failure and Transplant Cardiology, you can participate in the CMP at no risk because 2020/2021 are “no consequences” years in these disciplines (see question 4 above). Plus, you can earn CME and MOC medical knowledge points!
  2. If your certification expires in 2022 or beyond in any area, you can participate in the CMP at no risk and gain experience with the process. Plus, you can earn CME and MOC medical knowledge points!
  3. Similar to the KCI and the traditional MOC exam, the CMP will offer you two chances to pass each administration year!

If I Choose the CMP, Will I Still Have to Take the Traditional MOC Exam?

If you pass the CMP Performance Assessment each year, you won’t need to take the traditional MOC exam or the Knowledge Check-In to maintain your certification.

If I Choose the CMP but Change My Mind, Can I Switch Back to ABIM’s Assessments?

Yes, diplomates will always have the option to switch back to ABIM’s assessment. Please contact ACC to un-enroll from the CMP. This will then allow you to register for an ABIM assessment (subject to availability).

I Want to Participate in the CMP. How Do I Confirm That My Personal Computer Will Work?

You can take the CMP Performance Assessment (PA) on a laptop or desktop. Although the learning material and practice questions are available via tablet or mobile phone, you may not use a tablet or mobile phone to take the CMP PA. The SAPs are optimized for use with Chrome and Safari; ACC recommends that you avoid using Internet Explorer, Firefox or other browsers to view this product. If you are able to answer the practice questions within the SAPs on your laptop/desktop, then you will be able to answer the questions within the CMP PA.

Checklist to Prepare for Taking ACCSAP's CMP Performance Assessment (PA):

Do you have Chrome or Safari on your laptop/desktop? (ACC recommends that you avoid using Internet Explorer and Firefox)

Did you spend at least seven hours engaging with the material related to this year's CMP Performance Assessment (e.g., reading the text, watching the presentations and answering all practice questions with a minimum score of 70% correct)?

Do you have a private space that is free from disruptions for the two hours allotted for the assessment?

Do you have reliable internet access?

When Can I take a CMP Performance Assessment?

The CMP SAPs will feature a total of three Performance Assessments (PA) during 2020/2021, and you may participate in any two of them. You only need to pass one PA, but please keep in mind that if you want two chances to pass, you must participate in either the first or second PA. If you miss or skip them both, then you will only have one opportunity to pass with the third PA. The exact dates are:

ACCSAP

  • December 2 – 8, 2020
  • May 5 – 11, 2021
  • August 11 – 17, 2021

CathSAP and EP SAP:

  • November 4 – 10, 2020
  • June 23 – 29, 2021
  • December 8 – 14, 2021

HF SAP:

  • February 17 – 23, 2021
  • June 23 – 29, 2021
  • December 8 – 14, 2021

During each one-week window, you may take the PA once at your convenience any time of day or night. You do not need to schedule a specific time because there is no live proctor.

*All dates are subject to change.

Is the CMP “Open-Book”?

Yes, but keep in mind that you only have two hours to complete the assessment, which consists of 60 questions.

How Do I Know If I Pass the CMP?

  • After completing a Performance Assessment, most participants will receive immediate feedback about whether they passed or did not pass.
  • Some participants will score within a range that requires additional analysis and will not learn immediately whether they passed. They will learn their status via the Score Report described below.
  • Two weeks after the Performance Assessment window closes, ACC will release detailed score reports with the following information:
    • Your scaled score
    • The passing scaled score
    • Recommended content for further study based on the questions you answered incorrectly. (To maintain question security, you won’t be able to see the questions again or see exactly which questions you answered correctly or incorrectly.)
  • ACC will email all participants when the score report is available within the CMP Hub.

What Happens If I Don't Pass the CMP Performance Assessment in the Year my Assessment is Due?

  • Starting the year that your MOC assessment requirement is due, you must pass the CMP Performance Assessment (PA) every year to meet your assessment requirement. CMP participation before your assessment due year does not require a passing score.
  • You have two opportunities to pass each year
  • If you do not pass a CMP PA in the year that your assessment requirement is due, you won’t lose your certification. Instead, you will need to take ABIM’s traditional, 10-year MOC exam to achieve a passing score. After passing the traditional, 10-year MOC exam, you can return to the CMP.

Note: Due to the ongoing pandemic, all ABIM MOC requirement deadlines (including assessments) in 2020 and 2021 are extended to 12/31/22.

Do I Have to Buy ACCSAP Each Year to Participate in CMP?

Your purchase of ACCSAP includes five years of access, so you only need to buy it once every five years.

What Is the Total Cost to Participate in the CMP?

Participation in the CMP involves two separate costs:

  • ABIM annual cost to participate in MOC*
  • $132 per year if you pay BEFORE the year due
  • $165 per year if you pay IN the year due
  • $185 if you pay AFTER the year due

*Paid directly to ABIM regardless of the MOC option you choose

  • ACCSAP purchase, which gives you five years of access to all learning and assessment materials**
  • $1,500 for an ACC member
  • $1,900 for a nonmember
  • $900 for fellows in training or emeritus members

**Paid directly to ACC for access to all CME learning content, plus the option to use ACCSAP as your MOC assessment option through the CMP.

My institution subscribes to CardioSource Plus. Will the CMP be available through it?

Your institution’s subscription to CardioSource Plus includes the traditional elements of ACCSAP (text, presentations, and practice questions). It does not include the new CMP element, which is called the Performance Assessment. If you want to participate in the CMP, you will need to purchase your own personal version of the relevant SAP.

My assessment due date is not until 2022 or later. When should I start participating in the CMP?

  • You are not required to do anything before the year your assessment is due. As long as you take the Performance Assessment and pass it in the year your current certificate expires, you will be reported as maintaining your certification.
  • You can gain experience taking Performance Assessments without the stress of achieving a passing score by purchasing the relevant SAP early and taking the Performance Assessment. You are not required to pass a Performance Assessment until the year your assessment is due.
  • In addition to helping you become familiar with the Performance Assessment, ACCSAP will also provide you with all of the CME and MOC Medical Knowledge (Part II) points that you need each year.
  • If you decide that you would prefer to take a different assessment option (such as ABIM’s traditional 10-year exam or Knowledge Check-In), you may use ACCSAP as a study tool or you may simply use it to keep yourself current in cardiovascular knowledge.

I have already completed all the topics within the relevant SAP and claimed all the MOC/CME. Will I have to redo the seven hours every year before taking the performance assessment?

Yes, you will have to redo the seven hours for the topic(s) featured in each year's Performance Assessment, but ACC will update that topic. For example, the 2020/2021 Performance Assessment in Cardiovascular Disease will focus on Coronary Artery Disease (CAD). The current CAD “learning material” (text, presentations, and practice questions) will be replaced by an updated version in 2020, so even though you have to spend another seven hours engaging with it, it will be different material than what you saw this year.

Can I use the CMP to regain my certification status if my ABIM certification in a cardiovascular specialty has lapsed because I have not taken the 10-year examination?

No, currently the only “re-entry” pathways for a lapsed certificate are (1) to take and pass the traditional 10-year MOC exam or (2) to take and pass two consecutive Knowledge Check-Ins within two years. Diplomates in this category should check with ABIM for specific actions and to note the dates when exams are offered. The 10-year MOC exam is offered every year in each discipline, but Knowledge Check-Ins are only offered every other year for each discipline, and will no longer be available in any discipline after 2021.

Can I take the Performance Assessment as many times as I want during the administration windows?

No, you will have two chances annually to take and pass your Performance Assessment and you may take it once during an administration window.

Besides meeting the Performance Assessment requirement, does participating in the ACCSAP CMP also fulfill ABIM’s MOC requirements?

With regard to ABIM’s MOC point requirement, over time, continuous engagement with the annual CMP will earn you more than enough MOC points to meet the MOC 100-point requirement every five years. However, if your five-year MOC points requirement is due within the next two or three years, additional points may be necessary. This would depend on how many points you have already accrued once you enter the pathway.

Be sure to check your ABIM Physician Portal to see your specific circumstance. If you are maintaining certification in interventional cardiology, please note that the five-year attestation requirement also remains in place.