WHAT IS BOARD CERTIFICATION?
A podiatric surgeon who is certified by the American Board of Podiatric Surgery (ABPS).
Most medical specialties have certifying boards that are recognized by members of the national health care community. Hospitals, surgery centers, HMO’s, and PPO’s, often consider physician certification status in deciding whether to extend privileges or participation rights to the physician. Doctors who are board certified are referred to as “diplomates.”
A podiatric surgeon certified by the American Board of Podiatric Surgery has successfully completed an extensive credentialing and examination process. The doctor had to submit, for review, many different types of surgical cases and procedures that were performed in a clinical setting. In addition, the written and oral examinations that must be successfully completed by a podiatric physician before attaining board certification by the ABPS require a demonstration of the applicant’s comprehensive knowledge, experience and skill in podiatric surgery. The knowledge and skill your physician has demonstrated includes: the diagnosis of general medical problems and surgical management of foot diseases, deformities, and trauma of the foot, ankle, leg, and related structures.
” …precertification clinical experience (surgical training) requirement assures that your board certified podiatric surgeon brings significant experience to the care of your feet.”
WHAT IS ABPS?
The American Board of Podiatric Surgery was established in 1975 as an independent, nonprofit organization for the purpose of certifying podiatric surgeons found to be qualified after meeting rigorous requirements. ABPS is recognized by the joint Committee on Recognition of Specialty Boards, the board recognizing agency of the American podiatric Medical Association. The major objective of ABPS is to protect and improve the health and welfare of the public by the advancement of the art and science of podiatric surgery.
EDUCATION AND CLINICAL EXPERIENCE
After completing four years of podiatric medical school, a podiatric surgeon participates in a surgical residency program where he/she performs many foot and ankle procedures. The residency programs are held in hospitals and medical centers across the country. The length of the residency program varies from 12 months to 36 months. After several years of clinical experience and practice, a podiatric surgeon may apply for ABPS board certification. This precertification clinical experience assures that your board certified podiatric surgeon brings significant experience to the care of your feet.
A podiatric surgeon who is certified by the ABPS has successfully completed an intensive certification process that includes the submission of diverse sur gical cases for review, a comprehensive written examination, and an oral examination.
Case Review – A doctor applying for certification must submit operative reports, radiographs, and other important chart materials relating to surgeries that were performed in the last seven years of practice. The A13PS Credentials Committee, consisting of experienced podiatrists who are board certified, reviews these cases beginning with the patient’s initial office visit through surgery and the final healing process. The committee determines whether or not the candidate’s abilities, as reflected in these case histories, meet the standards established by the ABPS.
Written Examination – Candidates for certification must pass a comprehensive written examination that tests academic and clinical knowledge of podiatric medicine and surgery. This examination has been developed and carefully analyzed over the years in consultation with independent medical education testing experts to assure the written examination conforms to the highest standards of professional testing.
Oral Examination – The final step toward certification is the oral examination. This examination tests the physician’s clinical judgment and reasoning skills. During the oral examination, the candidate is required to discuss the diagnosis and treatment plan of several actual case scenarios in accordance with standards set by the ABPS.
CONTINUING EDUCATION AND RECERTIFICATION
ABPS diplomates (board certified podiatric surgeons) are required to participate in continuing education in subject areas relevant to the practice of podiatric medicine and surgery. Additionally, every 10 years a diplomate must take an examination to evaluate their current level of knowledge.
” …every 10 years diplomates must take an examination to evaluate their current level of knowledge.”