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President's Message

december 2023

Greetings Florida Chapter,

Today’s message is to deliver you some updates about the recently announced independent cardiovascular certifying board. First, I’d like to start with a couple of reminders about the current state of certifying boards and maintenance of certification.

Currently there is only one organization that offers certification after completion of cardiology fellowship training, that is the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM), which is a subsidiary of the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS). The ACC has no role in initial certification tests. After initial certification, there are two organizations that offer maintenance of certification (MOC), The ABIM and the National Board of Physicians and Surgeons (NBPAS). The NBPAS is run by a cardiologist, Dr. Paul Teirstein. The NBPAS is not as widely recognized by hospitals as a valid form of MOC, however some physicians have successfully petitioned their credentialing committees to accept it in lieu of ABIM MOC. The ABIM offers multiple ways to maintain certification, the ten-year exam, the Longitudinal Knowledge Assessment, and the Collaborative Maintenance Pathway (which is in partnership with the ACC).


Over the past few decades, cardiology has grown into a complex specialty that is distinct from Internal Medicine. In some large hospital systems, Cardiology has become its own department, separate from Medicine. A large part of the cardiology community feels that the time has come for us to have our own certifying board separate from the ABIM. To accomplish this, the ACC has partnered with other major cardiovascular professional societies that have exams given by the ABIM (Heart Rhythm Society, Society for Cardiovascular Angiography and Interventions, Heart Failure Society of America, and the American Heart Association) to create an independent certifying board.


A couple of important points about this new board. While these organizations are petitioning for this change, they will not ultimately own or run the board. The proposal is to create an American Board of Cardiovascular Medicine that would be a subsidiary of the ABMS, but separate from the ABIM. The reason for this approach is that the ABMS is already the primary organization recognized by essentially all hospitals and medical systems.


Now for some details on what this will look like for practicing cardiologists. The initial certification exam will probably look a lot like it does now, but the MOC process will be quite different. There will be no timed, high-stakes exams. The basic structure will be to identify gaps in knowledge and provide recommendations of Continuing Medical Education that would help to close those gaps. The goal is to make this process less costly, although specifics on pricing are not yet available. The process of applying and review by the ABMS is expected to take 8-12 months.


At this stage in the process, I would like to ask you to do the following:

  1. If you have more questions, there is a lot of information on the website: and this is where new information will be posted once available.
  2. DO NOT stop participating in MOC at this time, please continue to work on the LKA or CMP if that is your current MOC process.

Best regards,

David Winchester, MD, MS, FACC

President, Florida Chapter ACC


The Florida Chapter ACC supports the American College of Cardiology’s statement of support for the Ukrainian people; see this link for the full statement.

February 2-3, 2024

Agenda & Registration are here

February 2-3, 2024

Agenda & Registration are here

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FCACC Annual Meeting

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August 9-11, 2024

Registration opens February 1

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Enjoy Lands' End quality while showing your support for the Chapter!


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Florida Chapter, American College of Cardiology
3208 E. Colonial Drive, Suite 264

Orlando, FL 32803

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