Some time ago, I wrote that the maintenance of certification requirements of the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) were more like a shakedown than a civic-minded attempt to improve the quality of medical care. I was not alone. Many professional societies, including, I am happy to say, the American College of Cardiology were highly critical of the program.
The good news is that the ABIM heard the critics loud and clear. Despite earlier public defense of the policies, it has since done a complete “about face” and is now in a “listening” mode in anticipation of revising the program.
The announcement is a pretty remarkable mea culpa, and a pretty good model of contrition and re-consideration in the face of valid criticism. It is not often that leaders of any sort are willing to say, “[we] clearly got it wrong. We launched programs that weren’t ready and we didn’t deliver an MOC program that physicians found meaningful.”
I applaud the move by the ABIM to step away from its former position, and I look forward to seeing what comes next for MOC. Too bad more organizations (or governments, or politicians) don’t have the same integrity that allows them to publically reverse field in an honest and open way. I think we would all be better off if this behavior were more prevalent.
What do you think?