The ABP and the ABFM Collusion

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It is time for all the medical blogs, like ours, to continually blast our boards.  Let’s bring them down!  This MOC has gone far enough.  Here is a blog entry from a site called Rebel.MD (love the name, btw).  Dr. Meg Edison wrote this:

Collusion, plagiarism, whatever you want to call it, the American Board of Pediatrics and the American Board of Family Medicine are doing just that. This week, the American Board of Internal Medicine shocked the physician community by actually listening to working doctors and our vocal opposition to the overreach of MOC. The ABIM apologized and put a 2-year moratorium on their MOC program.

Landing somewhere between “when did you stop beating your wife” and “the lady doth protest too much methinks”, the American Board of Pediatrics and the American Board of Family Medicine feverishly emailed their own diplomats a response to the ABIM announcement. Their “response” can be accurately summarized as “Ha ha ha, we’re making too much money off you sheep. Go pound sand”.

But they tipped their hand, and inadvertently announced this widespread opposition to MOC and the ABIM’s response to all the ABP and ABFM diplomats, further highlighting how out-of-touch the ABP and ABFM really are. I couldn’t have done better myself.

But in reading these two press releases, I couldn’t help noting some striking similarities in their press release text, posted on the exact same day.

AMERICAN BOARD OF PEDIATRICS RESPONDS TO INTERNAL MEDICINE’S MOC ANNOUNCEMENT

Thursday, February 5, 2015

The American Board of Pediatrics is well aware of the current debate throughout the medical community regarding the value of Maintenance of Certification (MOC). On Tuesday (Feb. 3), the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) announced significant changes to its MOC requirements. While we are fellow members of the community of medical boards, ABIM and ABP serve different populations and have approached MOC differently. The ABP is looking closely at ABIM’s changes and the reasons behind them.

The ABP is making no changes to the requirements for maintaining certification at this time.

However, we continuously assess our certification requirements, including examinations and MOC activities. Through our website, blog and social media, we will keep you abreast of any changes to current processes and policies for both initial certification and MOC. These communications provide opportunities for you to engage with us in a dialog to address our mutual commitment to the health care of children and youth.

ABFP Press Release

AMERICAN BOARD OF FAMILY MEDICINE RESPONDS TO INTERNAL MEDICINE’S MOC ANNOUNCEMENT

Thursday, February 5, 2015

The American Board of Family Medicine is aware of the current debate throughout the medical community regarding the value of Maintenance of Certification (MOC). On Tuesday (Feb. 3), the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) announced a significant review of its MOC program. Specifically, the ABIM is reviewing its Part IV products (Quality Improvement Modules, e.g., PPMs, Metric) and determining the applicability of these products to their subspecialty physicians. We applaud the ABIM and its commitment to moving toward the 2015 Program for MOC standards as accepted by all ABMS Boards. While we are fellow members of the community of medical boards, ABIM and ABFM serve different populations and have approached MOC differently. The ABFM is looking closely at ABIM’s changes and the reasons behind them.

At this time, the American Board of Family Medicine is making no changes to the requirements for maintaining certification.

ABFM remains committed to implementing the ABMS 2015 Program Standards. We continuously assess our certification requirements, including examinations and MOC activities to continuously improve. Through our emails and social media, we will keep you abreast of current processes and policies for both initial certification and MOC. These communications provide opportunities for you to engage with us in a dialog to address our mutual commitment to the health of our patients and our communities.

ABFP Press Release

To prove the point, how about a little plagiarism checker…and what do we see?

ABPvsABFM

Yeah. It’s the same press release. Thank goodness they remembered to insert their own board names, that would’ve been embarrassing otherwise. I’ll let you decide who plagiarized or if it’s just plain old collusion under the auspices of the ABMS.

The same boards that treat doctors like criminals during our “secure board examinations” blatantly copy each other’s press releases. They’re more than “fellow members of the community of medical boards”, they’re in collusion against their own diplomats. Each board claims they are independently responding to their individual specialties, but they are clearly well-organized as a single entity against us. I’m not sure what the CEO of the ABP does for that $1.2 million salary, but writing original press releases doesn’t appear to be within his scope.

I’ll take this sloppy unprofessional behavior as a reflection of internal disarray in our boards. Faced with increasingly vocal opposition, a federal antitrust lawsuit, investigations into their finances, and a new competing board, they are up against the ropes and flailing wildly.

Keep fighting, docs. Support the efforts at changeboardrecert.com and find physician resources there. Support the AAPS lawsuit against the boards. Change your hospital bylaws to prevent MOC from being required for privileges.

Pursue state legislation to prevent MOC from being tied to your license, hospital privileges, and insurance participation. Fight against the FSMB Interstate Licensure Compact. Stop participating in MOC, change your board certification to the much cheaper NBPAS.

Keep fighting until we end time-limited certifications and the regulatory capture of these continuous certification schemes. We’re winning.

Meg Edison MD is a pediatrician in private practice. You can follow Dr. Edison on Twitter @megedison

http://rebel.md/abp-and-abfm-collude-in-moc-press-release/

Go, Meg, go!!

Douglas Farrago MD

Douglas Farrago MD is a full-time practicing family doc in Forest, Va. He started Forest Direct Primary Care where he takes no insurance and bills patients a monthly fee. He is board certified in the specialty of Family Practice. He is the inventor of a product called the Knee Saver which is currently in the Baseball Hall of Fame. The Knee Saver and its knock-offs are worn by many major league baseball catchers. He is also the inventor of the CryoHelmet used by athletes for head injuries as well as migraine sufferers. Dr. Farrago is the author of four books, two of which are the top two most popular DPC books. From 2001 – 2011, Dr. Farrago was the editor and creator of the Placebo Journal which ran for 10 full years. Described as the Mad Magazine for doctors, he and the Placebo Journal were featured in the Washington Post, US News and World Report, the AP, and the NY Times. Dr. Farrago is also the editor of the blog Authentic Medicine which was born out of concern about where the direction of healthcare is heading and the belief that the wrong people are in charge. This blog has been going daily for more than 15 years Article about Dr. Farrago in Doximity Email Dr. Farrago – [email protected]

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4 Responses

  1. Perry says:

    ” I’m not sure what the CEO of the ABP does for that $1.2 million salary,”

    Wow, that’s 10 times what the average pediatrician makes!

  2. Doug Given MD says:

    I got the letter from the ABFM and I responded to the email. I told them that the MOC was a crock of shit. To my surprise, they responded and said how they were making it better. I think every FP doc should send them the same email. Maybe then they would take the sheeple a little more seriously.

  3. Bob Blumm says:

    Great detective work from the son-in-law of a former chief of Detectives of NYPD. I like your insights and regardless of how some guise martyr under the broader category of policing the profession, it can be readily done with serious CME both from articles and meetings. I do about 200 CME’s per year because there is that much to learn but these other steps are not footstones but stumbling blocks.
    Bob Blumm

  4. Pat says:

    Bravo Dr. Edison! These boards have long since become self-serving instruments that bring no more to patient care than ICD-10. They are another wing of the bogus “quality” army, parasites living off of dwindling hosts.

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