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ABIM Suspends PI component from MOC

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From the ABIM, folks. The NCCPA should genuflect as well:




We got it wrong and sincerely apologize. We are sorry.

As a result, ABIM is taking the following steps:

  • Effective immediately, ABIM is suspending the Practice Assessment, Patient Voice and Patient Safety requirements for at least two years. This means that no internist will have his or her certification status changed for not having completed activities in these areas for at least the next two years. Diplomates who are currently not certified but who have satisfied all requirements for Maintenance of Certification except for the Practice Assessment requirement will be issued a new certificate this year.
  • Within the next six months, ABIM will change the language used to publicly report a diplomate’s MOC status on its website from “meeting MOC requirements” to“participating in MOC.”
  • ABIM is updating the Internal Medicine MOC exam. The update will focus on making the exam more reflective of what physicians in practice are doing, with any changes to be incorporated beginning fall 2015, with more subspecialties to follow.
  • MOC enrollment fees will remain at or below the 2014 levels through at least 2017.
  • By the end of 2015, ABIM will assure new and more flexible ways for internists to demonstrate self-assessment of medical knowledge by recognizing most forms of ACCME-approved Continuing Medical Education.
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This discussion has gone on for two decades and increases with vigor every time there are contemplated changes and the players in the field only get toplay out the game instead of being both heard and listened to. The additions have no relevence on too many of our lives and practices and has my friend Anderson printed out, who cares if a CT PA knows about an OB or Derm problem, we refer to each other also. Consider the pre-operative skills of a CT PA, consider the major part they play in surgery, their skill and dexterity and then the fact that they are masters in post surgical critical care. That's the meat of the profession and we all add to this in our specialty. The PANRE is both unfair, an educational experiment and does not assist a specialty PA to move forward by attending their specialty meeting or that of their discipline. There are far more specialists out in our profession and we are not being heard. We need to be able to stand and be counted, we need to fight for our specialty, we need to prove that our specialty CME is the guts of what makes us great and we need to get rid of an antiquated exam process regardless of how rich and powerful they have become and start a level playing ground for all. I'd work to help make that change until the day I die. bob Blumm

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My letter to the NCCPA President.


December 2015

To the NCCPA President,

I regret to inform you that YOU have failed to achieve a passing score by MY standards.

I have completed and failed my PANRE second attempt. And I have NO intention of spending any more money, time or stress over your continued scam. (Changing the diagnostic symptomatology to “full faced” instead of “moon faced”? That’s just outright trickery.) To this point I have spent $1600 dollars on prep courses. I have multiple books, one of which is titled “Teach to the Test”. Do you think that is ironic?  

I understand a re-certification exam is intended to uphold the standards of good medical care, by weeding out those poor practitioners who don’t keep up and practice good medicine. So here am I, 26 years out and at the peak of my profession, providing stellar care thanks to years of experience and skill in my specialty area (Orthopedic and Spine surgery). Twenty-six years practical experience with no malpractice, no disciplinary actions, maintained all CME requirements, and now in the last cycle of my career, and you would have me lose my job because I missed some one-minute questions while racing to “diagnose”  240 different “patients” in 4 hours in topics such as OB/GYN, Endocrinology, or accurate generic names for new drugs indicated for conditions that have been “discovered” in the 26 years since I graduated in specialty areas that I have not set foot in during that time! This makes sense  how ?

You are removing from specialized, skilled and experienced practice, a boatload of fine PAC’s that are at the top of their game!

Now many of us find ourselves in a real quandary, losing our jobs because agencies such as hospitals and major medical clinic’s require NCCPA certification. Multiple states have regulations that once a PA-C at the state level nothing more is required. I personally know of six PA’s with 20+ years of experience currently not working due to having failed the NCCPA exam.  Five of those PAC’s that are out of work have been replaced by nurse practitioners. Physician Assistants have this recertification requirement where Nurse Practitioners / CNRA have none. Maybe you should change your name to reflect the profession you are actually promoting?

The NCCPA has not helped the physician assistant profession by changing things. There was nothing wrong with the previous system. It worked -- why screw with it? Medicine has changed extensively already; driven by technology, electronic medical records, medications, treatments and diagnostics. Not to mention patient volumes.

I have worked hard and well. I have done all the right things. I certainly do not deserve to lose my job/medical benefits to a Nurse Practitioner because of your flawed mechanism for determining my worth. My Press-Ganey and patient satisfaction scores and the exceptional care that I provide to my patients will reflect my worth -- not your score.

So you can keep my NCCPA [C]. I will no longer attempt to pursue it.


From an OLD PA [No C] work horse,
What’s the old saying go “Write if you find work.”  For PA’s!
James Piscioneri


Also have gone back to my Birth Name

James TierneyPA [No C]

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This has been a problem, and will continue to be a problem for us specialized PAs, especially those of us 20 years out or more. Thankfully the surgical tract of the PANRE did help me to squeeze by.  

Overall, there are more and more sub-specialized PAs out there, and we will keep seeing more problems like this. 


Jerry Simons PA-C

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