Annual Membership Dues vs. Maintenance of Certification (MOC)

Periodically Headquarters is queried by members regarding the annual requirement for registration fees (dues), and Maintenance of Certification (MOC) fees.  While this topic has been addressed in prior newsletters, as new diplomates are brought in annually, it’s timely to cover it once again.

The ABPM Annual Membership Dues and Maintenance of Certification (MOC) are two separate fees. Upon achieving either Board Qualification or Board Certification ABPM members are required to pay an annual re-registration fee (dues). After becoming Board certified with ABPM, all Diplomates are required to enroll into the MOC program the following year as the form of re-credentialing through a 10-year cycle. The MOC program is in place to enhance your certification credential through the process of lifelong learning (versus taking a high stakes examination every 10 years to recertify). MOC fees cover the costs of developing, providing and administering MOC activities that promote lifelong learning with self-assessment and quality improvement

What are Annual Membership Dues used for?

Although the Board’s primary functions are conducting national examinations in the specialty of podiatric orthopedics and podiatric medicine and evaluating the ongoing competency of its membership, there are other tasks in which the Board is involved to provide prudent stewardship of the organization and preserve the value of the diplomates’ certificates. Our profession’s size and internal structure compel the major entities associated with it to be involved in other areas essential to the profession’s growth and ongoing success. The ABPM has both a direct responsibility to its members and an indirect responsibility through its input on various national committees working toward the betterment of the profession as a whole. What follows, while not comprehensive, should give the membership insight and perspective on the activities of the ABPM, and the relevance of the member’s ongoing financial responsibility with the organization.

The Board of Directors holds three face-to-face meetings per year that are convened approximately four months apart. These are supplemented by periodic conference calls. All are required to monitor the ongoing administration of the organization, review board policy, engage in strategic planning, receive reports, assess effectiveness of standing and ad hoc committees, etc.

The Budget/Audit Committee works closely with headquarters in determining the annual budget, fore-casting future budgetary requirements and personnel needs, reviewing monthly financial reports, etc.

The Bylaws Committee periodically reviews both the policy manual and bylaws to ensure that new and updated programs and actions are consistent with the language and spirit of those documents.  Periodically recommendations for specified bylaws modifications are brought to the membership for a vote.

The Credentials Committee is charged with evaluating state actions brought against members that impact their licensure, as well as current or former member appeals (e.g. reinstatement, change in member status, etc.).  It also monitors compliance with board policies (e.g. advertising, ethics, etc.)

The Examination Committee has four subcommittees: Certification, Qualification, In-training and the CAQ. They develop new items for the respective examinations, review and update established items, review and update reference and study guide material, interact with the Board’s psychometrist in assessing and developing current and future testing methodology and evaluate the examination blueprint relative to current diplomate practice.

The Marketing Committee is tasked with disseminating relevant information to the membership both on the web site and via e-mail, developing resident and diplomate newsletters, developing tools for use by the membership in connection with insurance panel and hospital activities, developing informational materials for distribution at the ABPM booth at regional and national conferences, etc.

The MOC Committee has been most recently working together on restructuring the existing MOC process that has been in place since 2011 after replacing a costly recertification exam. The committee is working collaboratively with both ACPM and PRESENT Podiatry to improve the process and allow members to maintain certification by completing valuable educational activities online among other required components.

The Nominations Committee reviews curricula vitae and existing committee member activity so as to make recommendations for future directors to the Board.  The Nominating Committee also assists with the candidate slate ultimately presented to the diplomates for election.

The Speaker’s Bureau, while not a committee, provides a presence proactively and at the request of the colleges of podiatric medicine and residency consortia to convey relevant information about board certification in general and ABPM certification in particular. Often the Speakers Bureau personnel also deliver clinical content in a specific area, or areas, of expertise.