American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery

May 2018 Diplomate

Posted On: May 1, 2018

President’s Message

This month’s column will highlight the Maintenance of Certification (MOC) Committee, which is among the busiest of American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery (ABOS) Committees over the last several years. The Committee is chaired by Jack Flynn, MD, of the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.

The MOC Committee oversees all aspects of the ABOS MOC program, often working in tandem with other ABOS Committees. The MOC Committee has developed a variety of additional offerings and has made substantive changes to the ABOS MOC process to create a more practice-relevant assessment experience for the Diplomate. Here are some of the MOC changes that have been made over the last three years:

  • Launch of the ABOS Web-Based Longitudinal Assessment program (ABOS WLA) in 2019
  • Development of these additional Practice-Profiled Recertification Computer-Based Examinations:
    • Foot and Ankle
    • Pediatrics
    • Shoulder and Elbow (Beginning in 2019)
    • Trauma
  • Allowed Diplomates to take an Orthopaedic Sports Medicine or Surgery of the Hand Recertification Examination to satisfy Part III MOC, even if the Diplomate does not hold a Subspecialty Certificate
  • Eliminated the general orthopaedic surgery questions from Practice-Profiled Examinations as well as the subspecialty examinations in Sports Medicine and Surgery of the Hand
  • Eliminated the MOC CME fee that had previously been required for all Diplomates who were participating in MOC
  • Expanded the case collection period to allow more Diplomates the opportunity to obtain the minimum number of cases necessary to apply for Recertification and capped the number of cases that need to be entered on the Case List at 75
  • Streamlined the Application, Peer Review, and Case List processes
  • Partnered with specialty and subspecialty societies to allow automatic transfer of Continuing Medical Education (CME) and Self-Assessment Examination (SAE) credits to the ABOS Dashboard
  • Expanded the period to satisfy the CME and SAE requirements and expanded the number of SAE activities that are acceptable to satisfy requirements

There’s a lot going on in ABOS MOC programs, and we continue to listen to your feedback and make improvements.

Thank you for the positive feedback that we have received about the ABOS WLA pathway. Currently, we are working with orthopaedic surgery leaders from all subspecialties and have identified subject matter experts who will develop resource matter in the coming months that will be used in the ABOS WLA pathway. These resources will predominantly include Level 1 and Level 2 studies but will also include review articles, clinical practice guidelines, appropriate use criteria, and other resources that represent important knowledge for that subspecialty. Additional information about the ABOS WLA, as well as the Practice-Profiled Examinations and the MOC process in general, can be found on

I will be attending the annual meeting of the American Orthopaedic Association meeting in Boston next month. Feel free to reach out to me directly during the meeting.

It is an honor to serve the public as the President of the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery. As always, if you have any feedback, please email me at

Peter M. Murray, MD
President, American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery

Office Hours with Executive Medical Director

I enjoy talking to ABOS Diplomates, whether on the telephone or through email. We welcome feedback about all of our Board Certification and Maintenance of Certification processes and procedures. Many of the changes that the ABOS has made have originated in part from Diplomate feedback. I am happy to address any personal concerns that you may have, or discuss how we can make improvements at the ABOS. Your input is important to the ABOS – we are listening.

While I am always available through email (, I want to formalize the process of telephone conversations so that ABOS Diplomates can connect with the Executive Medical Director directly when needed. I will be offering “Office Hours” in which our ABOS staff will schedule a phone call at a convenient time so that we can talk about your issues and get your input. The best way to schedule an appointment is through Kristin Caba at, or 919-929-7103. She will find a time that works for you.

You can also find me at orthopaedic meetings throughout the country. For example, I will be at the California Orthopaedic Association Annual Meeting at the end of this month, the American Orthopaedic Association Annual Meeting in June, and the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine Annual Meeting in July.

As a reminder, you can also talk to your Certification Specialist who can handle most ABOS-related questions or concerns that you have. We have four talented Certification Specialists who are assigned based on each Diplomate’s last name. To see which ABOS Certification Specialist is assigned to you, click on this link.

Do not hesitate to reach out to us!

David F. Martin, MD
Executive Medical Director, American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery


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