Press Releases

ABMS Brings Together Boards Community and Health Care Leaders to Focus on Improving Patient Care, Quality Standards at Annual Conference

ABMS Brings Together Boards Community and Health Care Leaders to Focus on Improving Patient Care, Quality Standards at Annual Conference

CHICAGO – September 10, 2018 – The American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) will convene more than 500 professionals from across the health care spectrum at ABMS Conference 2018 on Sept. 24–26 at the Aria Hotel and Conference Center in Las Vegas. Attendees will explore the challenges and opportunities facing professional self-regulation, the fields of assessment and training, quality and practice improvement, and today’s rapidly changing health care environment during the course of the Conference.

ABMS Conference 2018 Achieving Improvement Through Assessment and Learning. Together will offer health care professionals and leaders from ABMS Member Boards, hospitals and health systems, academic medical centers, specialty societies, and continuing medical education and professional development communities the opportunity to learn about and accelerate the implementation of best practices in assessment and medical education, health policy, and improvement in patient care through Board Certification.

“This year’s Conference focuses on the role of assessment and learning in improving the care and treatment of the patients, families, and communities that we serve,” stated ABMS President and Chief Executive Officer Richard E. Hawkins, MD. “The program theme accentuates how individuals who specialize in assessment, learning and quality improvement are all connected and how collectively, as a Board Community, work with each other, our diplomates and the greater health care community. ABMS Conference 2018 is an important forum that brings together leaders from all aspects of health care to share best practices and new ideas that will inform the work of their organizations and the work of the Boards.”

This year's program will feature more than 60 engaging sessions—including four plenary sessions hosted by recognized national and international leaders—on a variety of topics such as professionalism and professional standing, innovations in physician assessment and evaluation, continuing professional development, health policy and research, organizational operations,marketing, quality improvement (QI), and patient safety and engagement.

Featured plenary speakers include:

  • CEO Plenary: Richard E. Hawkins, MD, President and Chief Executive Officer, American Board of Medical Specialties
  • The Lois Margaret Nora, MD Endowed Lecture Plenary: Lois Margaret Nora, MD, JD,  MBA, Former President and Chief Executive Officer, American Board of Medical Specialties
  • Assessment Plenary: Elizabeth (Liz) Ann Farmer, BSc Hons, MBBS, PhD, FRACGP, MAICD, Clinical Professor, University of Wollongong School of Graduate Medicine, Immediate Past Chair, Medical Board of Australia Expert Advisory Group on Revalidation
  • Operations Plenary: Stephanie Waite, BSEd, MSLOC, Director of Leadership and Organizational Development at Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago

Selected session topics include:

  • Addressing the Opioid Epidemic through Quality Improvement
  • Engaging Physicians in Diagnostic Process Improvement: Innovative Interventions
  • Engagement of Primary Care Physicians in a National Ambulatory Quality Improvement Collaborative
  • Medical Professionalism and Accountability
  • Using Virtual Patient Case Studies for ABMS Certification and Continuing Certification

ABMS Conference 2018 will also feature exhibits of new products and services as well as a poster session of late-breaking research and evidence-based practices on topics ranging from Physician Well-being Initiatives to Assessment and Evaluation Methodologies.

As members of the ABMS Visiting Scholars Program present the results of their research projects in a dedicated breakout session, members of the new class of 2018-2019 will be announced. The Visiting Scholars Program provides a unique one-year, part-time professional development and scholarship opportunity for early career physicians, junior faculty, fellows, residents, and individuals holding advanced degrees in public health, health services research, and other relevant disciplines. 

Additionally, the first-ever ABMS Multi-Specialty Portfolio Program™ (Portfolio Program) Outstanding Achievement in Quality Improvement Award  will be announced at ABMS Conference 2018. The award was established to recognize the exemplary efforts and activities of Portfolio Program Sponsors that are working to improve patient care quality, safety, outcomes, and experiences.

“The close collaboration between ABMS and its Member Boards in planning this year’s Conference was a wonderful experience and enabled us to create a wide variety of programming that will allow attendees to learn from experts in areas that impact their roles and organizations,” said Kristin Gudenkauf, Chair of the ABMS Conference 2018 Planning Committee. “We appreciate the efforts by all those involved in contributing to an informative and meaningful event.”

*If you cannot attend, but would like post-conference information or to contact any of our presenters, please contact ABMS.


About ABMS

Established in 1933, the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) is the leading not-for-profit organization overseeing physician certification in the United States. ABMS establishes the standards its 24 Member Boards use to develop and implement educational and professional evaluation, assessment, and certification of physician specialists. More than 880,000 physicians are certified in one or more of the approved 39 specialties and 86 subspecialties offered by the ABMS Member Boards. For more information about ABMS, visit or call (312) 436-2600.

Download PDF of this Press Release.