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), will be available for cardiovascular disease starting in 2019, and it will integrate 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
- A Cardiovascular Disease CMP will be available in 2019. A CMP for additional subspecialties will roll out in subsequent years. The current plan is anticipated to be:
- Clinical Cardiac Electrophysiology: 2020
- Interventional Cardiology: 2020
- Advanced Heart Failure and Transplant Cardiology: 2020
- You are not currently registered for an ABIM assessment
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How Will the CMP for Cardiovascular Disease Work?
Starting in Fall 2019, ACC's Adult Clinical Cardiology Self-Assessment Program (ACCSAP) will offer a new feature called a Performance Assessment.
CMP Performance Assessments are shorter in length and consist of approximately 60 questions which are focused on one or two specific topic areas in cardiology such as arrhythmias. A new Performance Assessment will be available each year, covering approximately 20% of the field of cardiovascular disease, so that in a span of 5 years the breadth of general cardiology will be covered.
If you successfully engage in ACCSAP educational materials and pass the Performance Assessment that is offered each year, you will be considered by the ABIM to be satisfying the assessment requirement towards maintaining your certification. You will not need to take the ABIM 10-year MOC exam or the ABIM Knowledge Check-in (every 2 years).
How Do I Participate In the Cardiovascular Disease CMP?
To participate in the CMP, you must:
- 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 at www.abim.org.)
- Purchase ACCSAP. Your purchase provides you with 5 years of access.
- Spend 7 or more hours “engaging” in the topic covered by the 2019 CMP Performance Assessment, which is Arrhythmias. This means you need to spend at least 7 hours:
- Reading the text, watching/listening to presentations and/or completing practice questions in the Arrhythmias chapter
- Completing all 94 Arrhythmias practice questions and meeting the ACCSAP CME credit requirement by answering at least 70% of them correctly (you may answer as many times as necessary to achieve that score).
Take the first Performance Assessment in the fall of 2019*. 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.
2019 is a “no consequences” year, which means you will be considered as maintaining your certification as long as you participate in both the engagement and performance components of the pathway. In 2020 and beyond, you must pass the Performance Assessment to be considered as meeting your ABIM assessment requirement and will have two chances each year to do so. Your performance will be sent to ABIM annually so that they can accurately report whether or not you continue to meet your ABIM assessment requirement.
- Repeat steps 3 and 4 for the next 4 years.
- Purchase ACCSAP again in year 6 to continue with the CMP for another five years.
*Exact dates for the CMP Performance Assessment are TBD.
When Can My Specialty Participate in the CMP?
- The Cardiovascular Disease CMP will be offered through ACCSAP in 2019.
- The Interventional Cardiology CMP is anticipated to be offered through CathSAP in 2020. CathSAP is developed in collaboration with SCAI.
- The Clinical Cardiac Electrophysiology CMP is anticipated to be offered through EP SAP in 2020. EP SAP is developed in collaboration with HRS.
- The Advanced Heart Failure and Transplant Cardiology CMP is anticipated to be offered through Heart Failure SAP in 2020. Heart Failure SAP will be developed in collaboration with HFSA.
- We hope to add a CMP option for ACHD in the future.
What Are the Differences between the CMP, the ABIM's Knowledge Check-In, and the Traditional MOC Exam?
||CMP Performance Assessment
(new yearly assessment)
(new 2-year assessment)
|Traditional MOC Exam
(enhanced 10-year exam)
||Every 2 Years
||Every 10 Years
||At home or workplace
||At home, workplace or test center
||Test center only
Cardiovascular Disease in 2019
Interventional Cardiology and Clinical Cardiac Electrophysiology anticipated in 2020
Advanced Heart Failure and Transplant Cardiology anticipated in 2020
(other specialties coming later)
Cardiovascular Disease in 2019
Interventional Cardiology, Clinical Cardiac Electrophysiology and Advanced Heart Failure and Transplant Cardiology coming in 2020
Advanced Heart Failure and Transplant Cardiology
Clinical Cardiac Electrophysiology
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
||Yes, through the ACCSAP learning material.
||Access to UptoDate®
||Access to UptoDate®
||It is anticipated that results will be immediate.
||Yes, and full results within 3 – 4 weeks of administration
||No, within 3 months of administration
2 one-week windows in the fall of 2019. Exact dates TBD.
No need to schedule; take at your convenience during the testing window
4–6 times a year
2 times a year
Breadth of Discipline Covered
||20% of the field is covered in each year’s performance assessment.
||Currently, 100% of the field is covered with a more focused assessment being considered.
||100% of the field is covered.
||ACCSAP offers 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
(2 minutes per question)
- 7 hours of learning to access performance assessment
- 2 hours to complete performance assessment
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 will cover approximately 20% of the field. The table below outlines the topics to be tested over the next five years within ACCSAP. Each topic’s corresponding text and practice questions will be thoroughly updated in the year of its Performance Assessment. 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 Performance Assessment will be available in increments by topic or topic grouping.
||Topics Covered in ACCSAP's
CMP Performance Assessment
- Heart Failure
- Pulmonary Circulation Disorders
- Valve Disease
- Congenital Heart Disease
- Vascular Disease
- Pericardial Disease
What Does “No Consequences” Mean for the CMP?
- 2019 is a “no consequences” year, which means you will be considered as maintaining your certification as long as you participate in both the engagement and performance components of the pathway. If you are successful on the ACCSAP CMP Performance Assessment in 2019, it will count as a pass. If you are not successful and your exam was due in 2019, there will be no change to your certification status and you can continue to participate in the CMP. In 2020 and beyond, you must pass either the first or second offering of the Performance Assessment to be considered as meeting your assessment requirement.
- A “no consequences” year doesn't mean you can skip the assessment. If you skip it, and your certification expires in 2019, your status will change to Not Certified.
- In addition to meeting other certification requirements, physicians with certifications expiring in 2019 will need to take one of the three available MOC Assessment Options or they will no longer be certified. Available options include the ABIM 10-Year Traditional Exam, the ABIM 2-Year Knowledge Check In, and ACCSAP's CMP Performance Assessment.
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:
- If your certification expires in 2019, you can participate in the ACCSAP CMP at no risk because 2019 is a “no consequences” year (see question 4 above). Plus, you can earn all the CME and MOC medical knowledge points you need!
- If your certification expires in 2020 or beyond, you can participate in the ACCSAP CMP at no risk and gain experience with the new process. Plus, you can earn all the CME and MOC medical knowledge points you need!
- Similar to the KCI and the traditional MOC exam, ACCSAP's 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 ACCSAP’s CMP Performance Assessment each year after 2019 (because 2019 is a no consequences year), you won’t need to take the traditional MOC exam 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. More information on how switching will occur will be available later in 2019.
I Want to Participate in the CMP. How Do I confirm That My Personal Computer Will Work?
You can take ACCSAP’s CMP Performance Assessment 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 Performance Assessment. ACCSAP is optimized for use with Chrome, Firefox, Edge, and Safari; ACC recommends that you avoid using Internet Explorer to view this product. If you are able to answer the practice questions within ACCSAP on your laptop/desktop, then you will be able to answer the questions within the CMP Performance Assessment.
Checklist to Prepare for Taking ACCSAP's CMP Performance Assessment:
Do you have Chrome, Firefox, Edge or Safari on your laptop/desktop? (ACC recommends that you avoid using Internet Explorer)
Did you spend at least 7 hours engaging with the material related to this year's ACCSAP CMP Performance Assessment? (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 2 hours allotted for the assessment?
Do you have reliable internet access?
Is the CMP “Open-Book”?
Yes, but keep in mind that you only have 2 hours to complete the assessment, which consists of 60 questions.
How Do I Know If I Pass the CMP?
ACCSAP’s CMP Performance Assessment is delivered online so it is anticipated that you will receive your results immediately, along with a study guide designed to help you close any knowledge gaps identified by the Assessment.
What Happens If I Don't Pass the CMP Performance Assessment?
If you don't pass in 2019, you will still be counted as meeting your assessment requirement because 2019 is a “no consequences” year (see Question 4 above). After 2019, you must pass the CMP Performance Assessment every year to be considered as meeting your assessment requirement. But remember, you have two chances to pass each year.
After 2019, if you do not pass a CMP Performance Assessment you have the option to maintain your board certification by passing ABIM's two-year Knowledge Check-in (KCI) or the 10-year exam. After passing one of ABIMs alternatives, you can then return to ACC's CMP.
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. Plus, the yearly price of ACCSAP has decreased from $400 per year to $300 a year – a 25% savings!
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*
- $128 per year if you pay BEFORE the year due
- $160 per year if you pay IN the year due
- $180 if you pay AFTER the year due
*Paid directly to ABIM regardless of the MOC option you choose
- ACCSAP purchase, which gives you 5 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 ACCSAP.
My assessment due date is not until 2021 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 counted as maintaining your certification.
- You can gain experience taking Performance Assessments without the stress of achieving a passing score by purchasing ACCSAP 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 already bought ACCSAP. Now what should I do?
If you want to try the CMP, you should start “engaging” in the topic covered by the 2019 CMP Performance Assessment, which is Arrhythmias. This means you need to spend at least seven hours:
- Reading the text online and/or watching/listening to presentations in the Arrhythmias chapter
- Completing all 94 Arrhythmias practice questions and answering at least 70% of them correctly (you may answer as many times as necessary to achieve that score).
- The seven hours must be accrued in the same calendar year as the Performance Assessment for that topic.
- ACCSAP will automatically track your online engagement hours for you. 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.
Later this fall, the Performance Assessment will become available and anyone who is currently certified by ABIM and is not in an MOC exam grace period, and who has completed the steps above may participate in the Performance Assessment.
I have already completed all the topics within ACCSAP 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 Performance Assessment will focus on 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 ACCSAP CMP to regain my certification status if my ABIM Cardiovascular Disease certificate 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.
If my subspecialty certificate (EP, Interventional, or Heart Failure) is scheduled to lapse in 2019, can I take the ACCSAP CMP and “apply” the results toward fulfillment of my subspecialty certification?
No, if your subspecialty certification will lapse in 2019, your only option to avoid a lapse in your certification is to take ABIM's traditional 10-year MOC exam in 2019. The KCI and CMP options for cardiovascular subspecialties will not be available until 2020.
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 each administration . To ensure that you have two chances to pass, you must participate in the first Performance Assessment administration window. If you miss or skip it, then you will have only one attempt to pass with the second Performance Assessment.
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 ACCSAP 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. ACCSAP offers a total of 160 CME/MOC points, so you may need to claim MOC points for topics above and beyond the topic(s) that are the focus of that year's CMP.
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.