David Hoffman, DO
Type of practice: Cardiology
Practice location: Youngstown, Ohio
Years in practice: 38
Most recent board certification: 2007
Recent MOC-related financial costs: $194 for annual MOC fees
MOC-related time costs: One day for taking exam
Q: Where are you now in the MOC process?
A: I have to complete it before September, somehow, and I’ll figure out some weekend soon what I have to do.
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Q: What will that involve?
A: Reviewing whatever I need to review. The problem is, everywhere you turn they want to charge you a lot of money [for review materials.] To me that seems self-defeating. There’s so much information available now for free online they should just guide you to that.
Q: Will you need to travel to take the exam?
A: No, we have a testing site around here. So for me there’s no additional cost to prepare for MOC other than the cost of taking the exam.
Q: Do you think you’ve gotten any benefits out of the MOC process?
A: My personal feeling is no. I think anyone can obtain up-to-date information in their field. You can go to [CME] websites that link to articles with good information. And that’s what I do.
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Q: How would you design the MOC process if it were up to you?
A: I do like the idea that they’re changing the requirements of taking the boards to allow you to do it a little more frequently. My thought would be for each specialty to have the option of taking an open-book exam maybe every five years. And in doing so you must review important articles in your field chosen by a board of that specialty’s representatives. And be able to do it online.
Obviously, people like Paul Teirstein [founder and president of the National Board of Physicians and Surgeons, which was founded in 2014 to provide physicians with an alternative path to maintaining certification] who’s highly respected, feel that there can be significant improvement in the process, and I’m in full agreement.
Mike Tracy, MD
Type of practice: Internal medicine, pediatrics (double-boarded)
Practice location: Powell, Wyoming
Years in practice: 19
Most recent board certifications: 2016 for pediatrics, 2008 for internal medicine
Recent MOC-related financial costs: Overnight hotel stay prior to taking exam, $120; MKSAP review materials, $690; annual MOC fees (for double-boarding), $454
MOC-related time costs: None. Practice uses direct care payment model, so physicians’ income is not affected by not seeing patients every day
ACP/ABIM affiliation(s): Governor of ACP Wyoming chapter