Sunday, December 30, 2018
My Example of ABIM's Deceptive Trade Practices
First of all, after realizing my Board certification in Cardiovascular Diseases would expire in 2013, I paid for my Maintenance of Certification product to qualify to take my recertification examination in Cardiovascular Disease the Fall of 2013. At that time, I was subject to the ABIM's "double jeopardy" situation - if I did not pass my Cardiovascular Diseases re-certification, when it came time to re-certify in Cardiac Electrophysiology, it too would expire since the Cardiovascular Disease requirement was a pre-requisite for sitting for my Cardiac Electrophysiology re-certification examination. (This "double jeopardy" requirement was removed in 2015).
After paying for the ABIM MOC® product, this flier was sent to me explaining "Maintenance of Certification at a Glance."
On page 2 of the above flier, we can clearly see that I purchased the ABIM MOC® product that required only "100 points of Self-Evaluation of Medical Knowledge and Self-Evaluation of Practice Performance credit" to be in good standing with the ABIM for 10 years.
After completing the secure examination in the Fall of 2013, I received this letter on 22 January 2014 notifying me that I had passed the Cardiovascular Disease examination. It stated by Board certification "will remain valid until 2023." Also on that letter, I was told that "requirements to maintain certification will be changing in 2014."
Little did I know that after 2014 they would require twice as many MOC points (100 "points" every five years) to keep my time-limited ABIM board certification in good standing.
I did not agree to this change when I purchased my MOC® product from ABIM. As a result, I have now spent an additional $1675 purchasing continuing education modules from the American College of Cardiology to meet this new requirement.
While I am not an attorney, I believe changing these rules for the MOC® product that I had already purchased in 2013 from ABIM represents deceptive trade practices and will not rest until the ABMS MOC® product and its requirement for continuous certification (with its continuous payments to the ABMS member boards and their supporters) comes to an end.