The ACC and MOC: An Update

William Oetgen By William Oetgen, MD, MBA, FACC, ACC Executive Vice President for Science, Education, Quality & Publications

For the past two years, the ACC Board of Trustees has provided the following directives for ACC staff regarding the American Board of Internal Medicine’s (ABIM’s) Maintenance of Certification (MOC) program:

  • The College will be a trusted source of information for its membership regarding Maintenance of Certification.
  • The College will provide a robust selection of educational material for its members who choose to participate in the ABIM or ABP Maintenance of Certification program.
  • The College will engage the ABIM in an effort ease the burden of MOC and to improve the MOC requirements so that they are more responsive to the needs of practicing cardiologists.

Point #1 is ongoing and includes an active online ACC MOC Information Hub on; and multiple communications in JACC, including a recent Leadership Page from ACC President Richard A. Chazal, MD, FACC.

Point #2 is also ongoing. As of February 2016, 71 percent of CV Board Diplomates are participating in MOC activities. ACC records indicate that over the past two and one-quarter years more than one-third of individual FACCs have participated in MOC activities by utilizing free ACC MOC educational offerings.

Graph: Over the past two and one-quarter years  more than one-third of individual FACCs have participated in MOC activities

Point #3 has been a continuous conversation process with ABIM and has included the input of multiple other internal medicine and cardiovascular sub-subspecialty societies. These inputs have resulted in a number of modifications of the MOC requirements published in January 2014. These include:

  • Eliminating the “double jeopardy” provision requiring subspecialist cardiologists to maintain certification in both general cardiology and in subspecialty cardiology.
  • Decoupling of the initial board certification from enrolling in MOC.
  • Establishing CME-MOC parity.
  • Suspending the requirements for patient safety, patient voice and practice improvement activities.
  • Working actively to develop an alternative option to the 10-year examination.

In addition, the ACC's accounting staff have reviewed and discussed the ABIM’s publically available financial statements with an outside accounting firm and have found the statements to be in compliance with Generally Accepted Accounting Principles, as utilized by not-for-profit organizations in the United States.

Keywords: Cardiology, Certification, Female, Internal Medicine, Leadership, Parity

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