Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Board Certified - Make Sure the Board is Recognized by the ABMS

2013 Legislative Session Delivers a Victory for "Name Your Board" Legislation in Nevada

Posted June 17, 2013 -- As session wrapped up, Nevada joined the growing list of states that limit physician advertising of board certification.   On June 1, Gov. Brian Sandoval signed Assembly Bill 456 into law.  The bill requires physicians who advertise as "board certified" to disclose the full name of the medical specialty board from which they receive their certificate. The legislation also implements criteria that medical specialty boards must meet in order for physicians to be permitted to advertise as "certified." ASPS worked with stakeholder physician groups and Nevada ASPS member Michael Edwards, MD to champion the proposal as it moved through the legislature.  Dr. Edwards worked tirelessly the past two legislative sessions to seek passage of this important measure and was a key player in this victory.  The law becomes effective Jan. 1, 2014. 

Board certification is an important part of a doctor's credentials. The American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) is the only recognized organization in designating which boards are legitimate and meet rigorous criteria for their members.  Any doctor can advertise as being "board certified" - without being recognized by a legitimate board designated by The American Board of Medical Specialties. A doctor can take a course or undergo abbreviated training and be issued a piece of paper stating they are "board certified"- this means absolutely nothing and is misleading to the public.  More states should enact legislation to protect patients from misleading advertising of credentials. Unfortunately, the attorneys and lobbyists many times prevent good legislation.

The American Board of Plastic Surgery is the only board recognized by the ABMS in certifying Plastic Surgeons.