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ABMS Multi-Specialty Portfolio Approval Program Adds University of North Carolina School of Medicine

ABMS Multi-Specialty Portfolio Approval Program Adds University of North Carolina School of Medicine

Program Reflects Evolution to Align Initiatives for Physicians to Maintain Board Certification, Improve Patient Care

The American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) today announced that the new, North Carolina Maintenance of Certification (NC MOC) program, based at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine (UNC), has joined the ABMS’ Multi-Specialty Portfolio Approval Program (Portfolio Program). UNC physicians who are Board Certified by one of the 20 ABMS Member Boards participating in the Portfolio Program may now obtain ABMS Maintenance of Certification (MOC) credit for participation in organizational quality improvement (QI) initiatives. The new NC MOC Program is one of 59 Portfolio Program participants which include hospitals, health systems, medical societies and healthcare organizations from across the country.

“We are pleased to be an ABMS Multi-specialty Portfolio Program participant and provide MOC Part IV credit to a large number of physicians within the UNC Health Care System,” said Warren P. Newton, MD, MPH, Vice Dean of the UNC School of Medicine and Director of the North Carolina Area Health Education Centers (AHEC) Program and Chair of Family Medicine in the UNC School of Medicine.

The UNC Medical Center Improvement Council oversees quality improvement within the organization and will manage the NC MOC Program. The NC MOC Program team will work closely with the Improvement Council to facilitate and build skills in improvement science while offering MOC Part IV credit to approved QI projects at the UNC Medical Center. These QI initiatives locally initiated and implemented organization-wide, will benefit UNC patients as well as provide valuable learning opportunities for the more than 2,200 participating physicians. The intent is to spread the program later across the state through NC AHEC.

“The Portfolio Program was developed to offer Board Certified physicians the opportunity to obtain MOC credit for QI initiatives they are participating in at their institutions, or in their practices and across a multitude of specialties,” said David W. Price, MD, FAAFP, FACEHP, Executive Director of the Portfolio Program. “UNC’s commitment to engaging their physicians in MOC QI activities is evident in their establishment of this new program and will have a direct impact on improving patient safety and care.”

“The NC MOC Program will help coordinate and elevate the University’s substantial quality improvement efforts to affect overall systematic changes,” said Michael Pignone, leader of UNC’s Institute for Health Quality Improvement. “We have identified common high priority performance improvement interventions, which include all of the Institute of Medicine’s six dimensions*, and believe that participation in the ABMS Portfolio Program will encourage our faculty to participate.” 

“We are pleased to have UNC not only join our Portfolio Program but make it a key element in their QI program” said ABMS President and Chief Executive Officer, Lois Margaret Nora, MD, JD, MBA. “The growth of our Portfolio Program and its diverse participant population are proof of its importance and value in engaging physicians in meaningful QI and Patient Safety initiatives, and of ABMS’ commitment to offering relevant and meaningful MOC programming to Member Board diplomates.”

To date, the Portfolio Program has helped engage more than 6,000 physicians in QI initiatives at hospitals and health systems across the country (many showing improvement in care outcomes) and has recognized their participation with MOC-eligible credit. Since its inception, more than 7,500 QI initiatives have been completed by Portfolio Program participants. For more information about participation in the Portfolio Program and sponsor research projects, visit the program website.

* Donald M. Berwick, A User’s Manual For The IOM’s ‘Quality Chasm’ Report. Health Affairs, 21 no. 3 (2002): 80-90.

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