Hospice & Palliative Medicine MOC Exam

  • The ABS, along with several other ABMS member boards, offers a subspecialty certificate in hospice and palliative medicine (HPM). The HPM MOC Exam is offered every even-numbered year to diplomates certified in HPM by the ABS. While diplomates will apply through the ABS, the exam will be administered through the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM).
  • The exam developed by the ABIM is a one-day exam approximately 8 hours long given through Pearson VUE testing services. An examination blueprint (pdf) (content outline) is available from the ABIM website.
    Next Exam: Fall 2018

When to Take Exam

  • ABS certificates expire on Dec. 31. Diplomates are eligible to register for an MOC exam starting 3 years before their certificate's expiration; this includes the final year of certificate validity. Surgeons with lapsed certificates may also apply; see our Lapsed Certificate Policy.
  • Diplomates who apply for two MOC exams in the same year do not need to submit the registration materials twice; however registration fees must be submitted for each exam.

General Requirements

To be eligible for this exam, diplomates must:

  • Certification/MOC: Be certified by the ABS in HPM and meeting the requirements of the ABS MOC Program. Certification may not be revoked. Current certification in general surgery is not required. Diplomates not meeting MOC requirements cannot apply for the exam until MOC re-entry requirements are met.
  • Professional Activity: Be in the active practice and/or teaching and/or research and/or administrative activities relevant to HPM. If diplomates are providing care to hospitalized patients, they must hold practice privileges at an accredited health care institution. If diplomates no longer hold privileges, they must provide an explanation on the application form.
  • Professional References: Receive satisfactory references from the HPM supervisor and chair of credentials at the institution where the majority of work is performed. If necessary, another physician of comparable rank may be used.
  • Medical License: Have a currently registered full and unrestricted license to practice medicine in the U.S. or Canada. Diplomates are required to immediately inform the ABS of any conditions or restrictions in force on any active medical license they hold.
  • Adhere to the ABS Ethics and Professionalism Policy.

Exam Registration Process

  • The ABS no longer requires a separate application process for MOC exams. As long as you are meeting MOC requirements, you may register to take an exam. The online registration process is posted in the spring of the exam year — please see How to Register.
  • Once you are registered for the exam, you will be mailed an exam admission authorization letter with final details and instructions on reserving a place at a computer-testing center.

Maintenance of Certification (MOC)

  • Upon passing the MOC exam, you will be issued a new certificate with an expiration 10 years from the expiration date of your previous certificate. The ABS will also waive 60 credits of CME with self-assessment toward MOC for this recertification; the the waiver will appear automatically in your CME Repository.
  • Surgeons who achieve ABS recertification may also apply to the AMA to receive 60 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™. Please see the AMA website and the direct CME application (pdf) for details.

For specific inquiries, please send an email to the exam coordinator.

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