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ABIM, ACP in accord on certification.

We would like to clarify some points raised in your article on hospital medicine ("Hospital Medicine Certification Ahead, June 15, 2007, p. 1).

The American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) is developing a process in which the focus of a physician's practice is evaluated and acknowledged by ABIM through the Maintenance of Certification process. Hospital Medicine is the first area of focused practice to be considered and approved by the ABIM Board of Directors according to criteria established by the second New and Emerging Disciplines in Internal Medicine (NEDIM) committee. ABIM is eager to have a parallel process for Comprehensive Internal Medicine and is completing development of this process now. Most importantly, approval of ABIM's focused practice proposal by the American Board of Medical Specialties is far from automatic, and that process has just begun. The input of other specialty boards will be key to the way this concept ultimately unfolds.

The American College of Physicians (ACP) fully supports pathways within ABIM's Maintenance of Certification program that allow internists to be evaluated based on their particular scope of practice. ACP wants to ensure that any process for practice-based evaluation strengthens internal medicine as a whole, including both office-based and hospital-based general internal medicine. The Maintenance of Certification process also should continue to accommodate internists practicing in both settings.

ACP and ABIM are continuing to work together on these issues and to refine the Maintenance of Certification process to make it relevant to practice in all settings and to ensure that it provides added value for the care of our patients and the welfare of the communities we serve.

Christine K. Cassel, M.D.

President and CEO

American Board of Internal Medicine

John Tooker, M.D.

Executive Vice President and CEO

American College of Physicians


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Title Annotation:LETTERS
Author:Cassel, Christine K.; Tooker, John
Publication:Internal Medicine News
Article Type:Letter to the editor
Date:Jul 15, 2007
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