COVID-19 forces cancellation of MOC exams

March 24, 2020

Spring testing has been cancelled by ABIM and ABFM

Both the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) and the American Board of Family Medicine (ABFM) have cancelled their spring testing dates for Maintenance of Certification (MOC) exams.

Richard J. Baron, MD, president of ABIM, announced that all MOC exams scheduled for spring have been cancelled because physicians are already experiencing significant personal and professional stress and disruption due to the COVID-19 virus. “Your expertise, skill and service are critical to our collective success in dealing with this pandemic, and your safety and wellbeing are ABIM’s primary concern at this time,” Baron said in a statement. “We did not come to this decision lightly, as we know that many of you have likely spent weeks or months preparing. Despite that knowledge, we believe that removing the potential risk and distraction of sitting for a spring assessment is the right thing to do for our ABIM Board Certified Physicians and for the country at this time of great uncertainty for our health care system and the patients we care for.”

Physicians will be able to reschedule exams at no cost and no physician will have their certification status negatively affected because of the cancellation, according to ABIM. Those who were scheduled to take a spring assessment should have been contacted via email about the changes. Exams can be rescheduled through the ABIM physician portal or by contacting the board at request@abim.org.

Pearson VUE - ABIM’s exam delivery provider - has also independently announced that they will close their U.S. and Canada-based Pearson VUE-owned test centers for at least 30 days.

Like the ABIM, the ABFM has also cancelled its spring MOC exams.

“With everything that front line family physicians are facing right now, we do not want you to have unnecessary concerns about your certification,” the ABFM said in a statement. “While the underlying certification requirements remain unchanged, we understand that it is important for you to have fewer distraction and to be able to focus on caring for your patients and supporting your families. As such, we are planning in advance for appropriate accommodations.”

Prometric, the company that provides testing sites for the Family Medicine Certification examination, is closing their centers in North America for a period of at least 30 days beginning March 17. ABFM is working with Prometric to identify possible examination dates over the summer and is committed to attempting to offer two examination cycles during this calendar year. ABFM will announce future options when they become available for members who were scheduled to take the examination in April.