Maryland Maintenance of Certification Task Force Declines to Recommend Legislation: Key Findings Summary

ABMS News Release (11/13/18)

New findings from a final report from the Maryland Health Care Commission's Maintenance of Certification Work Group are encouraging to the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS), as the stakeholders did not recommend any legislative action on Maintenance of Certification (MOC). Many stakeholders felt further regulatory action would be premature and unnecessary, given efforts by specialty boards to resolve physician concerns tied to cost, burden, and relevancy of their MOC programs. Furthermore, the stakeholders acknowledged hospitals' authority to amend their privileging requirements, with the report specifying that hospitals establish certification criteria based on patient expectations of quality of care.

The work group further determined, contrary to assertions by anti-MOC proponents, that hospitals are already free to select the certifying body that best meets their own expectations for quality care, and cited ABMS certification for its reliability and legitimacy, and that Maryland health insurers do not use board certification as a factor for payment. Finally, the report undermined anti-MOC advocates' contention that legislation is needed to promote competition for new certifying bodies, with the work group's recognition that at least one hospital system in the state already acknowledges an alternative certifying board.

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