The Dec. 31 deadline to earn and report CME credits required for AAFP membership re-election is fast approaching. In addition, some family physicians are facing the deadline to complete the American Board of Family Medicine's (ABFM's) Maintenance of Certification for Family Physicians(www.theabfm.org) (MC-FP) program.
Both active and supporting AAFP members must report a total of 150 credits -- including 75 Prescribed and 25 live credits -- every three years to remain in good standing. Members can meet Academy CME membership requirements by visiting the AAFP website to report credits earned, view transcripts and check re-election status.
The Academy also reports a member's CME totals to the ABFM, which satisfies at least a portion of the ABFM recertification requirements, as well.
Members can earn AAFP enduring material CME, as well as CME via American Family Physician, Family Practice Management, and FP Essentials, through successful completion of an assessment or quiz. Quizzes and assessments may be taken online via computer or Web-enabled mobile devices. Performance is assessed and scored immediately, and CME credit is added to a member's transcript on the date the assessment or quiz is successfully completed.
In addition, four groups of ABFM diplomates have MC-FP deadlines at the end of this year. These include FPs who certified or recertified in
- 2003 and chose the 10-year certification path,
- 2006 and chose the 10-year certification path,
- 2006 but chose the seven-year certification path, or
- 2009 and wish to remain on the 10-year certification path.
Diplomates in the first group are nearing the end of their 10-year certification. These diplomates may open and begin the 2013 examination application now, but until MC-FP requirements are met, the application cannot be cleared and finalized. Test centers and dates may not be chosen until an application is complete.
Those in the second group must complete MC-FP Stage Two by Dec. 31 of this year. The three-year certification extension will be awarded when Stage Two has been successfully completed, assuming that the diplomate has a full, valid and unrestricted license to practice medicine in the United States or Canada.
Diplomates in the second group who complete their Stage Two requirements by the end of the year will not need to take the examination until 2016. Diplomates who choose not to complete their Stage Two requirements will need to take the examination in 2013 to maintain certification. All MC-FP requirements must be completed before the application for the recertification exam can be completed.
Those who certified or recertified in 2006 and who are currently on the seven-year certification path must complete the MC-FP requirements for that seven-year cycle before the application for the next recertification exam can be completed.
Diplomates may begin the application process, but they may not complete the application and choose their test center until MC-FP requirements are met. The application for the 2013 recertification exam is now available on the ABFM website(www.theabfm.org).
Those who certified or recertified in 2009 and who wish to remain on the 10-year certification path must complete MC-FP Stage One by Dec. 31 of this year. A three-year extension to the certificate will be awarded when Stage Two is successfully completed.
Diplomates who do not complete Stage One requirements on schedule will continue on the 7-year certification path. The 7-year cycle requirements include three self-assessment modules (Part II), 1 performance in practice module (or an approved alternate Part IV activity), and three additional modules (your choice of Part II or Part IV), which must be completed before or during the application process for the next exam.
ABFM diplomates can check their MC-FP status by visiting "Track Your Progress(portfolio.theabfm.org)" (login required) within their Physician Portfolio or by contacting the ABFM support center by phone at (877) 223-7437 or by e-mail.