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Fam Med. 2014 Apr;46(4):299-303.

Family medicine residency program directors' plans to incorporate maintenance of certification into residency training: a CERA survey.

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American Board of Family Medicine, Lexington, KY.



Participation in Maintenance of Certification for Family Physicians (MC-FP) is now a requirement for residents to take the American Board of Family Medicine (ABFM) certification examination. The objective of this study was to determine baseline use of MC-FP products prior to this requirement and assess how family medicine residency program directors (FMPD) intended to integrate MC-FP into residency education.


We used the CERA platform to survey FMPDs. In addition to the core CERA demographic questions, we asked about the use of MC-FP in residency, how FMPDs intended to incorporate MC-FP, and how useful they believe MC-FP will be for resident evaluation. Additionally, we compared select results with the ABFM administrative database.


A total of 224 FMPDs responded, for a 50.6% response rate. There was agreement between CERA and ABFM data on the percentage of residencies already using Part 4 modules (39.3% versus 38.8%) but not Part 2 modules (24.7% versus 62.8%). Group MC-FP activities were the preferred method for both Part 2 (45.0%) and Part 4 (54.4%). Most FMPDs agreed that MC-FP will be effective in teaching quality improvement and assessing competencies. Respondents from dually accredited programs were more likely to have used Part 4, but not Part 2, activities prior to 2012.


Prior to MC-FP becoming a requirement in residency, a sizeable minority of residencies were already using these tools for education. Assessment of competencies will be crucial in the Next Accreditation System, and MC-FP may help in tracking clinical development over a physician's career.

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