I am Board Certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) in both Cardiovascular Disease and Internal Medicine.
Recently the ABIM has changed the rules and started a Maintenance of Certification (MOC) Program which is chock-full of useless forms, fees and tests.
I, and thousands of other doctors have rebelled against this program, recognizing that there is no evidence it will improve doctors care, patient outcomes or overall quality of medical care but that it will fill the coffers of bureaucrats and bureaucratic institutions and fritter away valuable time we could be spending on patients.
I did not pay my several hundred dollar fee the ABIM demanded for 2015.
As a result, I received this morning an email from ABIM telling me that “your MOC status has changed”. I logged in and found that I was listed as “Certified, Not Participating in MOC.”
I’m still the clinical cardiologist I was yesterday and I still spend hours weekly reading about the latest developments in cardiology that impact clinical care, teaching residents, and giving conferences but I wonder what the ramifications of this will be.
Dr. Wes, a cardiologist who has been a vociferous opponent of MOC is alerting physicians that one ramification is that the SGR bill the Senate is considering would tie doctor evaluations to MOC status.
You can read his comments here. He includes sample letters to send to Congress.
If the federal government puts their weight behind sanctifying MOC, then all physicians will be forced to participate.
I strongly all urge all physicians to consider weighing in on this with your local congresspeople.
Cardiologists often make the mistake of assuming their patients have a greater understanding of heart function, physiology, anatomy, terminology, and pathology than is realistic. I