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  • 1. American Board of Allergy and Immunology ALLERGY AND IMMUNOLOGY DIPLOMATES' NEWSLETTER Spring, 2002 The American Board of Allergy and Immunology (ABAI) is a Conjoint Board of the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) and the American Board of Pediatrics (ABP). The Newsletter is sent annually to all ABAI diplomates to inform them of ABAI policies and new developments. ABAI is a SEPARATE organization from its sponsoring societies: the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology (AAAAI), the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), the American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology (ACAAI), the American Medical Association (AMA), and the Clinical Immunology Society (CIS). The Board of Directors and staff of ABAI welcome comments and questions regarding the newsletter at any time. Comments should be directed to the ABAI office in Philadelphia. ABAI THANKS DEPARTING DIRECTORS The ABAI acknowledges with gratitude the dedicated service provided by Dr. Mel Berger, M.D., Ph.D., (ABP) who completed his six-year term as ABAI Director on December 31, 2001. He has provided wise counsel and countless hours on behalf of the ABAI and the specialty of Allergy and Immunology. Dr. Thomas A. Fleisher, M.D. (ABP) completed terms (1991-1993) and (1994-1999) with service as liaison representative to ABP 1996-1998 and 1999-2001. ...AND WELCOMES INCOMING DIRECTORS (2002-2007) Thomas B. Casale, M.D. (ABIM) is the Director of Clinical Research as the School of Medicine, Professor and Assistant Chair in the Department of Medicine, and Chief of Allergy and Immunology at Creighton University. He previously served the Board from 1999-2001. Dale T. Umetsu, M.D., Ph.D. (ABP) is Professor of Pediatrics in the Division of Immunology and Transplantation Biology and Chief of the Division of Allergy and Clinical Immunology at Stanford University. 2003 EXAMINATION DATE ANNOUNCEMENT The ABAI Board of Directors will administer the next certification, CLI and proctored final recertification examination on Monday, August 11, 2003. This date will avoid conflicts with fall religious and national holidays and, for many first time takers, will shorten the period between completion of fellowship and administration of the examination. AMERICAN MEDICAL ASSOCIATION - PHYSICIAN'S RECOGNITION AWARD ABAI diplomates who successfully complete all requirements for recertification are eligible for the AMA Physician's Recognition Award (PRA) through reciprocity. The AMA changed its Physician Recognition Award (PRA) rules in 2000 to allow 25 hours of AMA PRA Category 1 credit to be claimed for specialty board certification and maintenance of certification (recertification) toward the PRA certificate. The new rules replace the earlier policy of merely endorsing recertification for a PRA certificate without providing specific recognition of credit. If you would like to claim the credit, please enter the information in the category 1 section of a regular PRA certificate and attach a copy of this notification to the application. Additional continuing medical education (CME) credit can be reported on the form; at least 50 hours of education is required for a PRA certificate. PRA applications can be obtained from the AMA through the AMA Web-Site (http://ama-assn.org/CME), via Fax at 312-464-4567, or by telephone at 312-464-4669. Applications can also be requested by mail addressed to the PRA Program. American Medical Association, 515 North State Street, Chicago, IL 60610. Please address all questions concerning credit for certification or recertification to 312-464-4665.
  • 2. American Board of Allergy and Immunology Table 1. 2001 ABAI Examination Performance Among Various Subgroups Examination Subgroup Number of Candidates Percent Pass Certification: Total Group 271 72% First-Time Takers 194 78% Repeat Takers 77 55% ABIM-Certified 140 73% ABP-Certified 130 71% US/Canadian Graduates 154 72% International Graduates 117 71% Recertification: Total Group 224 99% Time-Limited Diplomates 210 99% Time-Unlimited Diplomates 14 100% Clinical & Laboratory Immunology: Total Group 4 75% Table 2.ABAI Certification Examinations: Pass Rates (1991-2001) Subgroup 1991 1993 1995 1997 1999 2001 Total Group 66% 66% 67% 67% 66% 72% First-Time Takers 73% 74% 75% 73% 75% 78% Repeat Takers 40% 42% 48% 54% 51% 55% RECERTIFICATION: A COMMITMENT TO CONTINUING EDUCATION Recertification in Allergy and Immunology is open to all ABAI Diplomates. The recertification process provides Diplomates an opportunity to demonstrate their commitment to the continuing professional education necessary to provide the best in patient care, education, and research. 2002-2003 Recertification Process Registration opens January I and closes June 30, 2002. Part I of the two part process begins in August 2002 when a home study, open book examination will be distributed to registered candidates. This examination contains 150- items covering the broad field of allergy and immunology, including both basic science and clinical science. The passing score for the home study examination is 80%; recertification candidates whose scores are below that will be required to complete a remedial home study process in early 2003 to gain entrance to Part II, the final 200-item proctored recertification examination to be given on August 11, 2003. The Part II examination contains 50 Recent Advances questions and 150 Allergy/Immunology questions. Those candidates who pass the four-hour Part II Examination will be issued new certificates in "Allergy and Immunology." The ABAI continues to refine the recertification process in response to feedback response and experience dating back to 1977. First, Part I home study exam and Part II proctored exam questions are now reviewed by five panels of practicing allergists throughout the country. Second, Part II proctored exam will be offered in hotels at or adjacent to major airports and will begin mid-morning, saving many examinees overnight hotel expenses. As interest in updating credentials increases over time, additional refinements will be considered to accommodate the increasing number of Diplomates seeking to recertify. ABAI diplomates who successfully complete all requirements for recertification are eligible for the AMA Physician Recognition Award (PRA) through reciprocity.
  • 3. American Board of Allergy and Immunology AMERICAN BOARD OF MEDICAL SPECIALTIES The ABMS is the umbrella organization for the 24 U.S. approved medical specialty boards. Established in 1933, the ABMS serves to coordinate the activities of its Member Boards and to provide information to the public, the government, the profession and its Members concerning issues involving specialization and certification in medicine. The mission of the ABMS is to maintain and improve the quality of medical care in the United States by assisting the Member Boards in their efforts to develop and utilize professional and educational standards for the evaluation an certification of physician specialists. The ABMS maintains a list of all board certified diplomates. Information about a physician's certification status can be obtained by referring to: http://www.abms.org, contacting the toll-free telephone number 1-866-ASK-ABMS (1-866-275-2267), or seeing The Official ABMS Directory of Board Certified Medical Specialists (revised annually), which is available on CD-ROM and in many medical and public libraries. The Directories are available from Elsevier Science, 655 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10010, phone toll-free 888-437-4636; fax 212-633-3820.” FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS We encourage ABAI Diplomates to communicate directly with the ABAI office. It is useful to share with readers several frequently asked questions. I have a time-unlimited certificate. What happens if I elect to recertify in Allergy and Immunology and am not successful? Nothing changes; your time unlimited certificate is still valid throughout your lifetime. Similarly if you successfully recertify in Allergy and Immunology, your recertification is time-unlimited. Must I recertify in either Medicine or Pediatrics in order to recertify in Allergy and lmmunology? Although current certification by either the American Board of Internal Medicine or the American Board of Pediatrics is required for your original certification by the ABAI, you may recertify in Allergy and Immunology without current ABIM or ABP certification. What is the best book to use when studying for the ABAI recertification examination? Any standard textbook of allergy and immunology should provide sufficient information for passing the recertification examination. Although the ABAI does not sponsor or endorse specific board review courses offered by specialty organizations, some Diplomates find these courses useful. The home study recertification examination should be valuable for persons wishing to identify areas of strength or weakness in their knowledge base. The scope of the final proctored recertification examination mirrors that of the home study examination. How will the ABAI respond to inquiries regarding my certification if I allow my time-limited certificate in Allergy and Immunology (1993-2003) to expire? The ABAI will respond by providing the inclusive dates of your certification (1993-2003) and stating that you are no longer certified as of January 1, 2004. You can renew your certification by successfully completing a subsequent ABAI recertification process (e.g., you do not have to re-take an ABAI certification examination). Why must I wait so long for my score to be reported following the proctored examinations? Each ABAI examination undergoes a "key validation" process after its administration. Psychometricians review the performance statistics for each question. Occasionally, the correct answer for a question is mis-keyed during the editing and printing process. In some instances, in the interval between the time the question was written and the time the test was administered, two answers to a question become correct, or no answer becomes correct. Most of the time between test administration and score reporting is taken up by this review. Why doesn't the ABAI offer computer-based examinations? The ABAI is moving in that direction. For example, the items contained in the 2003 certification examination and the 2002-2003 recertification examination will be developed "on-line, " with the assistance of Measurement Research Associates/Data Harbor, our test vendor. This advance is an important intermediate step toward computerized secure examination that can be offered at many more locations than is the case with the present pencil-paper examinations.
  • 4. American Board of Allergy and Immunology DATES TO REMEMBER 2003 CERTIFICATION EXAMINATION August 11, 2003 Registration: November 1, 2002 – January 31, 2003 Proctored Examination: August 11, 2003 2003 CLINICAL & LABORATORY IMMUNOLOGY August 11, 2003 Registration: November 1, 2002 – January 31, 2003 Proctored Examination: August 11, 2003 2002-2003 RECERTIFICATION EXAMINATION Registration: January 1 – June 30, 2002 Part I Home Study Examination: August –November 30, 2002 Answer Sheets Due for Scoring: November 30, 2002 Results and Feedback: January 2003 Remedial Examination (if required): February 2003 Part II – Proctored Examination: August 11, 2003 * Non-refundable late penalty fees apply to applications postmarked after registration closes. ABAI does not recommend specialists, offer advice on allergy/immunologic medical problems, or provide fee schedules. ABAI does not sponsor or maintain any records on any courses, which claim to be review courses in preparation for its examinations, nor does it offer or endorse any specific publication or courses to prepare for its examinations. Notification of address changes would be appreciated, because ABAI is a separate organization from its sponsoring specialty societies: American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology American Academy of Pediatrics – Section of Allergy and Immunology American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology American Medical Association Clinical Immunology Society