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Policies

LICENSURE POLICY

Certification and maintenance of certification is contingent upon medical licensure and in compliance with all applicable Board policies, rules and codes. Physicians must hold a valid, unrestricted allopathic and/or osteopathic medical license in at least one jurisdiction in the United States, its territories, or Canada. If more than one license is held in these jurisdictions, all licenses must meet the requirement of being unrestricted. Should any medical license become restricted at any time, the Board may undertake proceedings consistent with due process to declare the individual ineligible to apply for any ABP certification, revoke any previously issued certificate(s) and/or take other actions against the physician.  Physicians are responsible for immediately notifying the ABP of any restriction placed on any medical license held. Upon successful reinstatement or remedy of the encumbered medical license(s), and upon the ABP being notified of such by the physician, and subsequent verification by the ABP of general eligibility to apply for and hold an ABP certificate, certification may be attained pursuant to the ABP’s Reinstatement Policy found within the ABP’s Disciplinary Policy.

A physicians’ license may be deemed “restricted” for purposes of this policy if, as a result of action by a State or other legally constituted Medical Board (hereafter “State Medical Board”), the physician:

  1. has had his/her license revoked or surrendered his/her license in lieu of revocation or as part of a settlement of a disciplinary action;
  2. has had his/her license suspended or placed on probation;
  3. has had special conditions or requirements placed on his/her license (such as, but not limited to, supervision, chaperoning during the examination of patients, additional training beyond that required of all physicians for the maintenance of licensure), and regardless of whether or not such conditions or requirements are imposed by order of the State Medical Board or are the result of a voluntary agreement and/or stipulation between the physician and the State Medical Board.

At the sole discretion of the ABP, the ABP may review instances of licensure actions to determine whether such actions constitute a restriction in violation of this policy.

Beginning in 2019, applicants for the initial general pediatrics certifying examination or an initial pediatric subspecialty certifying examination must provide proof of a current, unrestricted medical license in the US or Canada. The option to fulfill the licensure requirement using a non-US or non-Canadian license will no longer exist for applicants for the 2019 initial certifying examinations or any initial certifying examination thereafter.

Diplomates practicing exclusively abroad, i.e., who are not practicing in the US or Canada, and who do not continue to hold a US or Canadian license after initial certification, must provide proof of licensure in the country in which they practice in order to meet requirements for the Professional Standing and Licensure component of Maintenance of Certification.

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Policy revised to apply to certification and maintenance of certification: 01/05
Approved by Board of Directors: 02/05
Revised by Credentials Committee 06/06
Approved by the Board of Directors 6/06 and 9/06 (Effective for the 2008 initial certification examinations)
Updated 08/09
Revised and Approved by the Board of Directors 9/12; 9/14; 10/15; 10/17; 3/18

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MISREPRESENTING BOARD STATUS

Individuals Posing as Being Certified by the ABP

The following steps will be taken if the ABP becomes aware of an individual claiming to be certified by the ABP in any specialty or subspecialty when the record cannot support the claim:

  1. Obtain evidence from the individual(s) and/or entity(-ies) to whom the individual claimed to be certified.
  2. Credentials Committee will review the materials cited in #1 above. If the Credentials Committee determines the individual has, either directly or indirectly, falsely claimed to be certified the individual may be subject to the ABP’s Disciplinary Policy at the Credentials Committee’s discretion.
  3. The individual will be informed by letter (return receipt requested) and, if appropriate, given the opportunity for an appeal as described in the ABP’s Appellate Review Procedure.
  4. The State Licensing Board may be notified of any actions taken against individuals once the individual is informed. In certain instances, the Credentials Committee may choose to notify the other relevant organizations such as credentialing bodies, hospitals, and managed care organizations of any action taken against an individual.
  5. Other circumstances will be handled on an individual basis, including the option of directing the ABP lawyer to make a demand against the individual and/or assert a legal claim.

Board Status: Time-Limited Eligibility, “Board Eligible”

The ABP’s Time-Limited Eligibility for Initial Certification Examinations policy establishes a 7–year limit to the time that can elapse between a pediatrician’s completion of training and achievement of certification. Once the 7–year period of eligibility ends, an applicant for certification must complete an additional period of supervised practice in order to regain eligibility to apply for certification.

Following expiration of the time limit period, a candidate must cease and desist from making any representation of board eligibility. Any violation of this rule is considered a breach of ethical standards of medical practice and may subject the individual to ABP’s Disciplinary Policy.

A candidate’s eligibility for board certification does not equate with acceptance for an examination. Acceptance to take an examination requires the review of an individual’s credentials by the ABP, which does not occur until a formal application is submitted. Upon receipt of a signed release form provided by the ABP, information will be provided regarding the individual’s certification history and whether an individual’s application to take the general and/or subspecialty certification examination was accepted and when the acceptance expires.

If an individual has not yet applied for the examination, the ABP will be unable to verify satisfactory completion of training and suggests individuals seek this verification from the general pediatrics or subspecialty fellowship training program they completed.

If an inquiry is made to the ABP regarding the status of an individual, the response will be only whether the individual is or is not certified. Upon receipt of a signed release form, provided by the ABP, information will be released regarding the individual’s certification history and whether an individual’s application to take a general or subspecialty certifying exam was accepted and when the acceptance expires.

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Adopted 6/82
Revised 3/18

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OSTEOPATHIC PEDIATRIC TRAINING AND ELIGIBILITY FOR ABP CERTIFICATION 

The ABP requires that applicants for certification in general pediatrics complete 3 years of training in programs accredited by ACGME or in programs in Canada accredited by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. In light of the agreement between ACGME, the American Osteopathic Association and the American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine for a single accreditation system announced in February 2014, the ABP will accept applications from individuals who have completed osteopathic pediatric residency training only if the training has been accredited by ACGME for the entire duration of required training. Training completed while the osteopathic training program either has not applied for accreditation by ACGME or has applied and has the status of pre-accreditation cannot be used to fulfill the requirements for certification by the ABP.

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TIME-LIMITED ELIGIBILITY FOR INITIAL CERTIFICATION EXAMS

GENERAL PEDIATRICS:

Overview of the Requirement:

Beginning with the examination administered in 2014, the American Board of Pediatrics will require that applicants have completed the training required for initial certification in general pediatrics within the previous 7 years (eg, 2007 or later for examinations administered in 2014). If the required training was not successfully completed within the previous 7 years, the applicant must complete an additional period of supervised practice in a training program accredited by the ACGME in the US, or the RCPSC in Canada in order to apply for certification. The purpose of the requirement is to provide the ABP with an independent assessment of the individual’s contemporary competence to practice pediatrics without supervision. Such verification of contemporary competence is required before the ABP will allow an additional 7-year window of eligibility to sit for the certifying examination.

Details of the Requirement:

New applicants and re-registrants for the general pediatrics certifying examination who have completed residency training prior to the 7-year eligibility window must satisfactorily complete a minimum of 6 months of supervised general pediatrics practice in the environment of an accredited training program that offers a breadth of general pediatrics experience. This practice must be supervised such that the program director and faculty of the accredited program can assess the individual’s contemporary competence to practice pediatrics unsupervised. The program director of the accredited general pediatrics residency must submit the specifics of the planned experiences to the ABP for approval prior to initiation and then verify the individual’s competence at the conclusion of the supervised practice. The ABP allows flexibility in the design of the clinical experiences but they must include inpatient experience, newborn care, emergency care, recognition and stabilization of the ill child, and outpatient experience. Details of these requirements are outlined in an accompanying document, Plan for Supervised Practice and Assessment of Competence in General Pediatrics in the Accredited Training Program.

Following the satisfactory completion of the period of supervised practice, the candidate will have 7 years to become certified. If unsuccessful in becoming certified during the additional 7 years of eligibility, the applicant must enter an accredited general pediatrics residency program and complete 3 years of training in order to regain eligibility. When applying or re-applying for certification, the applicant must meet the requirements for acceptance in effect at that time.   

PEDIATRIC SUBSPECIALTIES:

Overview of the Requirement:

Beginning with the examinations administered in 2014, the American Board of Pediatrics will require that applicants have completed the training required for initial certification in the pediatric subspecialties within the previous 7 years (eg, 2007 or later for examinations administered in 2014) with one exception noted below.* If the required training was not successfully completed within the previous 7 years, the applicant must complete an additional period of supervised practice in a training program accredited by the ACGME in the US, or the RCPSC in Canada in order to apply for certification. The purpose of the requirement is to provide the ABP with an independent assessment of the individual’s contemporary competence to practice the pediatric subspecialty without supervision. Such verification of contemporary competence is required before the ABP will allow an additional 7-year window of eligibility to sit for the certifying examination.

Details of the Requirement:

New applicants and re-registrants for subspecialty certification who have completed fellowship (or were approved on the basis of practice) prior to the 7-year time limit must satisfactorily complete a minimum of 6 months of supervised clinical subspecialty practice in the environment of an accredited training program, with the breadth of experiences comparable to the clinical experiences in fellowship.  The supervised practice must be in the discipline in which certification is sought. This practice must be supervised such that the program director and faculty of the accredited program can assess the individual’s contemporary competence to practice the subspecialty unsupervised. The program director of the accredited fellowship must submit the specifics of the planned experiences to the ABP for approval prior to initiation and then verify the individual’s competence at the conclusion of the supervised practice. The ABP allows flexibility in the design of the clinical experiences as long they allow comprehensive assessment in all aspects of the subspecialty discipline needed for unsupervised practice. Details of these requirements are outlined in an accompanying document, Plan for Supervised Practice and Assessment of Competence in a Subspecialty in the Accredited Training Program.

Following the satisfactory completion of the period of supervised practice, the candidate will have 7 years to become certified. If unsuccessful in becoming certified during the additional 7 years of eligibility, the applicant must enter an accredited subspecialty fellowship program and complete 2 years of training in order to regain eligibility. The requirement for scholarly activity is waived. When applying or re-applying for certification, the applicant must meet the requirements for acceptance in effect at that time.     

Exception:

*The following provision may apply to individuals who completed subspecialty training in the US or Canada before completing the accredited general pediatrics training required for certification by the ABP. Most of these individuals will have completed nonaccredited pediatrics training overseas or osteopathic pediatric training in the US. The provision is as follows:  

Individuals who, solely because of their sequence of training, will not have an opportunity to take a subspecialty examination before their subspecialty eligibility has expired will be permitted one opportunity to take a subspecialty examination, provided that no more than 10 years have elapsed since their subspecialty training was completed and the individual is currently certified in general pediatrics.

Approved by BOD – 6/09
Edited – 3/10
Revision approved by ABP Executive Committee 11/14
For further information regarding both General Pediatrics and Subspecialty training and time-limited eligibility, visit this Questions and Answers Page.

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EXPIRATION OF CERTIFICATES

If a certificate has an end date, the certificate will expire on December 31 of the year of expiration.

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ABP PRIVACY POLICY

In the course of the in-training, certification and maintenance of certification processes, the American Board of Pediatrics, Inc. (ABP) must collect, utilize, and in some cases share with third parties various forms of personal and professional information and to explain the ABP's policies and practices regarding the privacy of such information. The ABP has adopted a Privacy Policy applicable to the collection, use, and disclosure of such personal and professional information. Residents are encouraged to review the ABP's full privacy policy.

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HONOR CODE: PROFESSIONALISM, MORAL AND ETHICAL PRINCIPLES

The American Board of Pediatrics (ABP) expects residents and fellows in training, candidates for certification, and its diplomates to adhere to and maintain certain fundamental professionalism, moral and ethical principles.  As specified by The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education and the American Board of Medical Specialties, residents, fellows, candidates and diplomates must demonstrate a commitment to carrying out professional responsibilities, adherence to ethical principles, and sensitivity to diverse patient populations. 

  1. Violation or Misuse of any of the ABP’s Intellectual Property Rights

The materials developed by the ABP for its in-training, certification, and maintenance of certification examinations, including MOCA-Peds, are copyrighted and the sole property of the ABP and may not be reproduced, recorded, published, transmitted, misused, stolen or distributed – in part or in whole – in any way, without the ABP’s permission. Reproduction of copyrighted material, in whole or in part, may be a federal offense. Irrespective of copyright, any attempt to reproduce, record, publish, transmit, misuse, steal or distribute ABP in-training, certification or maintenance of certification examinations, including MOCA-Peds, in whole or part, undermines the fairness of the certification process and may be considered unethical, unprofessional, and dishonorable, and will constitute grounds for the ABP to impose disciplinary sanctions pursuant to the ABP’s Disciplinary Policy and/or take any other action deemed appropriate by the ABP and its legal counsel.

  1. Misrepresenting Board Status

Falsely representing one’s Board status undermines the integrity of the ABP’s mission.  The ABP will consider any individual claiming to be certified by the ABP in any specialty or subspecialty when the record cannot support the claim to be unethical, unprofessional, and dishonorable, and will constitute grounds for the ABP to impose disciplinary sanctions pursuant to the ABP’s Disciplinary Policy and/or take any other action deemed appropriate by the ABP and its legal counsel.

Likewise, falsely presenting oneself as “Board Eligible” or making any representation of board eligibility after eligibility has expired will be considered unethical, unprofessional, and dishonorable, and will constitute grounds for the ABP to impose disciplinary sanctions pursuant to the ABP’s Disciplinary Policy and/or take any other action deemed appropriate by the ABP and its legal counsel.

  1. Grounds for ABP Finding Unethical, Unprofessional and/or Dishonorable Conduct

Residents, fellows, candidates and diplomates must understand that unethical, unprofessional and/or dishonorable behavior including, but not limited to, the listing below may be sufficient cause for the ABP to impose disciplinary sanctions pursuant to the ABP’s Disciplinary Policy and/or to take other appropriate action as deemed appropriate by the ABP and its legal counsel:

  1. Violation or misuse of any of the ABP’s Intellectual Property Rights;
  2. Misrepresenting board status;
  3. Falsification of or assistance in the falsification of an ABP application in part or in whole;
  4. Misrepresentation or the assistance of misrepresentation in any ABP application;
  5. Submission of any falsified documents to the ABP, including falsification of data for maintenance of certification;
  6. Use of any falsified ABP documents or the submission and/or transmission of such documents to other persons or entities;
  7. Giving or receiving of prohibited and/or inappropriate aid in any certification or maintenance of certification examinations and other certification activities, including MOCA-Peds as evidenced either by observation or information or by statistical analysis;
  8. Engaging in irregular or inappropriate behavior during the administration of any examination including MOCA-Peds, as evidenced either by observation or information or by statistical analysis.
  9. Unauthorized possession, reproduction, recording, discussion, reconstruction of content from memory, or disclosure of any materials, including, but not limited to, examination questions or answers, before, during, or after an examination or other certification activities;
  10. Offering of any financial or other benefit to any director, officer, employee, proctor, or other agent or representative of the ABP in return for any right, privilege, or benefit which is not usually granted by the ABP to other similarly situated candidates or persons.
  11. Violation of the ABP’s Licensure Policy; and/or
  12. The finding, determination or stipulation of unethical, unprofessional and/or dishonorable conduct, whether final or not, by any entity or individual with authority over, control of, jurisdiction over, or regulation of an individual (e.g., state or federal prosecutors, state medical board, professional association, peer review boards or other health care governing bodies with the power to grant or restrict medical privileges), regardless of whether or not such finding is imposed by formal order, voluntary agreement and/or stipulation.

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Approved 12/04
Revised 3/18

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POLICY REGARDING POTENTIAL BREACH OF TEST INTEGRITY

All ABP examinations are administered in testing centers by test administrators who are responsible for maintaining the integrity and security of the certification process. All candidates taking an ABP examination will be monitored. Test administrators are required to report to ABP any irregular, improper or disruptive behavior by a candidate and have the authority to discontinue a candidate's testing and eject a candidate from a testing center. Irregular, improper or disruptive behavior is any behavior that undermines, disrupts or threatens the integrity or validity of the examination administration, whether it occurs before, during or after an examination. Examples of irregular or improper behavior include, but in no way is limited to, giving or obtaining information or aid, looking at the test material of others, excessive use or misuse of unscheduled breaks, bringing unauthorized items (eg, watches, cell phones) into the examination room, failing to comply with time limits or instructions or other improper behaviors.

In addition to reports provided by the test administrators, the ABP utilizes data forensic techniques to identify data patterns that indicate potential test irregularities. Any irregular or improper behavior that is observed, made apparent by data forensics or discovered by other means will constitute grounds for invalidation of a candidate's examination.

Depending on the potential breach and evidence reviewed, the ABP may exercise the following options:

  1. Invalidate the examination results without refund.
  2. Provide an opportunity to retest under conditions that ensure the validity of scores. New testing dates will be scheduled within two (2) weeks of notification of the potential breach. Candidates electing not to reschedule must notify the ABP within one (1) week of the notification of the potential breach to cancel their registration. Candidates electing not to reschedule will have their examination invalidated and will receive a refund of the examination fee. The processing and evaluation fee is not refundable. Candidates who wish to take the examination during the next regularly scheduled testing window will need to register as a re-registrant.
  3. Pursue any other appropriate disciplinary, legal and/or reporting actions, such as, but not limited to, denying admission to the ABP's certification and/or maintenance of certification programs, revoking existing certificates, bringing legal action against the individual and/or reporting incidents to third parties such as state licensing boards.

The ABP is not liable for any expenses or associated losses incurred as a result of the investigation, invalidation and retesting efforts for such cases identified. Any subsequent appeal of a decision resulting from the application of this policy will be handled according to the established appeal process of the ABP.

Approved by Executive Committee - 11/12

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APPLICANTS FOR INITIAL CERTIFICATION WHO ARE UNABLE TO APPEAR FOR A SCHEDULED EXAMINATION

Applicants for a certifying examination who are unable to appear for the examination due to the following circumstances may petition the ABP for an alternative test date. Alternative test dates must be scheduled no later than 6 weeks following the test date originally scheduled by the ABP.   

Qualifying Events:

  • Complicated pregnancy, temporary physical disability or sudden onset of physical disability
  • Pregnancy with due date within 6 weeks before the test date and 2 weeks after the test date
  • Birth or adoption of child within 6 weeks before the test date and 2 weeks after the test date
  • Serious medical condition of candidate or *immediate family member during the exam week 
  • Death of *immediate family member within the week before the test date
  • Military Deployment

Candidates must provide documentation of the circumstances that prevent them from appearing at their scheduled appointment. Candidates are urged to submit petitions to the ABP as soon as possible, but no later than 3 business days following the test date. Documentation of medical disabilities, medical emergencies, qualifying pregnancy or birth of child must be provided by the treating physician. Decisions as to whether a qualifying event results in a rescheduled exam are at the sole discretion of the ABP. If the alternative test date is missed, the ABP will not consider a second alternative date. 

Alternatively, candidates may elect to delay the examination until the next scheduled administration and receive a full refund of all fees paid for the exam. However, the time-limited eligibility to achieve certification will not be extended.

*Immediate family member: spouse/partner, child, stepchild, parent, stepparent, sibling or parent-in-law

Approved by the Board of Directors 6/2017
Edited 11/2017

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COMPETENCE WITH INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY

The following competency is required of 1) candidates for initial board certification in general pediatrics and/or a pediatric subspecialty and 2) diplomates of the ABP, ie, board-certified general pediatricians and pediatric subspecialists:

Consistent with the ABMS/ACGME general competencies, the ABP expects its candidates and diplomates to use information technology (including the use of personal computers, the Internet, and e-mail) to support patient care decisions and patient education, better manage medical information, maintain certification and support their continuing medical education efforts.

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DISCIPLINARY POLICY

SANCTIONS

Revocation of Certificates

All certificates issued by the ABP are subject to the provisions of the articles of incorporation and the bylaws of the ABP.  Each certificate is subject to possible revocation in the event that:

  1. the issuance of such certificate or its receipt and/or possession by the physician so certified shall have been contrary to or in violation of any of the provisions of the ABP's articles of incorporation or bylaws; or
  2. the physician so certified shall not have been eligible to receive or possess such certificate, irrespective of whether the facts constituting him or her so ineligible were known to any or all of the members of the ABP at the time of the issuance of such certificate; or
  3. the physician so certified shall have been found to be in violation of the ABP’s Honor Code: Professionalism, Moral and Ethical Principles policy.

If the ABP obtains probable cause to believe that a certificate should be revoked for any of the reasons set forth above, it may institute proceedings for revocation pursuant to the ABP’s Revocation Procedure, which may be obtained by writing to the ABP. The steps to be taken to appeal this determination are outlined in the Appellate Review Procedure of the ABP, which may be obtained by writing to the ABP.

Ineligibility
Any finding of a violation of the ABP’s Honor Code: Professionalism, Moral and Ethical policy may constitute grounds for the ABP to deny admission to an examination, to withhold scores or certificates, require an individual to retake an entire activity or portions thereof, disqualify the individual from future examinations and/or other certification activities, invalidate and/or nullify current certification activities, mandate remedial actions, or take any other action deemed appropriate by the ABP and its legal counsel.

The steps to be taken to appeal this determination are outlined in the Appellate Review Procedure of the ABP, which may be obtained by writing to the ABP.

REINSTATEMENT

Becoming Certified Again Following Revocation or Surrender of Certification

  1. A physician may petition the ABP to regain status as a diplomate whenever he or she is eligible again for certification.
  2. Once a certificate issued by the ABP has been revoked or surrendered, that certificate ceases to exist. Former diplomates desiring to become certified again must complete all then-current requirements for maintenance of certification and meet any other requirements deemed appropriate by the ABP.
  3. The ABP may allow the physician to enter the certification process by administrative action or the ABP may refer the matter to the ABP’s Credentials Committee for a recommendation.

Becoming Eligible Again Following the Imposition of Any Ineligibility Sanction

For any ineligibility sanction of five (5) years or more, an individual may petition the ABP to reconsider the sanction once every five (5) years.  Such petitions will be handled pursuant to the applicable Appellate Review Procedure of the ABP, which may be obtained by writing to the ABP.

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Approved 11/86
Revised 3/18

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REVOCATION PROCEDURE

The policy of the American Board of Pediatrics (ABP) is to insure that it considers all diplomates for whom the ABP takes action to revoke a certificate on a consistent and non-discriminatory basis and affords them with due process. Accordingly, the ABP has adopted the following procedures for the revocation of a diplomate’s certificate in general pediatrics or in a pediatric subspecialty.

Probable Cause Determination

  1. The ABP’s Disciplinary Policy sets forth the circumstances for which the ABP may revoke a diplomate’s certificate.
  2. If the ABP obtains information from any source relating to the possible occurrence of one of these events, the ABP may request additional information from state licensing boards, institutions, or any other appropriate entities or individuals relating to the possible event.
  3. Based upon the information in the ABP’ s possession, the ABP’ s President or his/her designee will make an initial determination as to whether or not there is probable cause to believe that one of the events for revocation of the diplomate’s certificate has occurred.

Revocation Determination

  1. Upon an initial determination that there is probable cause for revocation, the ABP will notify the diplomate that revocation procedures are commencing and that the diplomate may appeal the determination by filing a written notice of appeal pursuant to the ABP’ s Appellate Review Procedure. The ABP’s notification will be sent via certified mail, return receipt requested, and will be marked confidential. If the ABP is informed that its notification did not reach the diplomate, the ABP will make a reasonable attempt to determine the address of the diplomate and will resend the information.
  2. If the ABP has not received a written notice of appeal within the time period defined by the ABP’s Appellate Review Procedure or if the ABP’s determination to revoke a diplomate’s certificate is upheld following an appeal, then the ABP will notify the diplomate that the ABP’ s revocation determination is final and the ABP will update its records to reflect that the diplomate is not certified. The ABP will notify the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) that the diplomate is no longer certified by the ABP and will request the ABMS to update its records to reflect the revocation of certification. The ABP may also notify any other medical specialty board who may have issued a certificate to the diplomate or any other appropriate organization or individual that the diplomate is no longer certified.

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5/97
Revised 3/18

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APPELLATE REVIEW PROCEDURE

The American Board of Pediatrics (ABP) will, on a consistent and non-discriminatory basis, afford reasonable due process for all diplomates and candidates receiving certain negative determinations and/or certain ABP disciplinary actions. Accordingly, the ABP has adopted the following rules and procedures for appeals.

  1. Right to Appeal

An individual has a right to appeal the following determinations by the ABP:

  1. A determination that a candidate is ineligible to take an examination due to the ABP’s determination that the candidate is in possession of a restricted medical license.
  2. A determination that a candidate who has submitted a completed application for certification in a pediatric subspecialty is ineligible to take the examination due to the ABP’s determination that i) evidence of and/or the quality of the applicant’s Scholarly Activity/Research or Meaningful Accomplishment in Research is inadequate or ii) the practice experience is inadequate for admission via a Practice Pathway.
  3. A determination that the individual has failed an examination, limited to appeals of instances of a compromise in the administration of the examination due to environmental or technical issues. An appeal from a failed examination will not reverse a failing grade or alter a score. Rather, a successful appeal may result in an invalidation of a score or result, and the candidate being rescheduled to sit for examination at the next available examination administration. In order to be able to institute an appeal under this subsection A(3), the individual must have sent a notice of the alleged compromise in the administration of the examination due to environmental or technical issues, in writing, to the ABP within 72 hours from the completion of the examination at which the compromise allegedly occurred.
  4. A sanction imposed pursuant to the ABP’s Disciplinary Policy.

In addition to the above, the ABP may, at its sole discretion, grant an appeal of other determinations on a case-by-case basis.

In order for an individual to invoke any right of appeal, an individual must not be party to any legal or administrative proceeding at any time throughout the appellate process that is based in full or in part on substantially similar facts and/or circumstances which relate to the intended appeal.

  1. Appellate Fees and Costs
    1. Appeal Fee: As published. The fee may be returned at the discretion of the ABP.
    2. Diplomate and/or candidate costs and expenses in bringing or pursuing an appeal are the sole responsibility of the individual, including travel expenses, postage/delivery costs, copying costs, legal fees or expenses and any and all other costs and expenses. The ABP is not responsible or obligated for the payment or reimbursement of any expense or cost incurred by any individual bringing or pursuing an appeal.
  2. Appeals Procedures for Appeals Based on A1 - A3 Above
    1. Notice of Right to Appeal. In conveying to an individual a negative determination pursuant to A1-A3 above, the ABP will state the individual’s right to appeal under these procedures, a copy of these Appellate Review Procedures, the Appeal Fee (if any) and the time limit of fourteen (14) days for the individual to submit to the ABP a “Notice of Appeal” and the full Appeal Fee. With respect to Appeals pursuant to A3, however, an appeal will not be allowed to proceed if the individual had not sent a notice of the alleged compromise in the administration of the examination due to environmental or technical issues, in writing, to the ABP within 72 hours from the completion of the examination at which the compromise allegedly occurred.
    2. Notice of Appeal. To maintain an appeal, Appellant must timely submit to the ABP a written “Notice of Appeal”, together with all relevant supporting documentation, and the full Appeal Fee. The Notice of Appeal must specify each and every basis and supporting fact of the appeal. The Notice of Appeal and all supporting documentation must be written (audio and/or video recorded materials are not allowed and will not be reviewed) and must be in a single mailing to the ABP. If the ABP does not timely receive a Notice of Appeal and/or the full Appeal Fee, the Appellant will have forgone his/her right to an appeal and the determination shall be deemed final.
    3. Written Appeals Only. No oral hearings or presentations will be granted or allowed.
    4. Determination. The ABP’s President, or his/her designee(s) (hereinafter “SMT”), is authorized to make final determinations with respect to 1) the timeliness and/or adequacy of the Applicant’s submission of his/her Notice of Appeal and/or 2) the substantive merits of the appeal. The Appellant and/or his/her representative shall not have the right to attend any aspect of the determination of appeals under this subsection. In making a final determination, the ABP may consider or reject any materials submitted by the Appellant and/or any other documents, statements, data, information based on relevance, appropriateness, and/or necessity.
    5. Notice of Determination. The result of the Appeal shall be sent to the last known address of the Appellant within seven (7) days of the final determination.
  3. Appeals Procedures for Appeals Based on A4 Above
    1. Notice of Right to Appeal. In conveying to an individual, a negative determination pursuant to A4 above, the ABP will state the individual’s right to appeal under these procedures, a copy of these Appellate Review Procedures, the Appeal Fee and the time limit of twenty-eight (28) days for the individual to submit to the ABP a “Notice of Appeal” and the full Appeal Fee.
    2. Notice of Appeal. To maintain an appeal, Appellant must timely submit to the ABP a written “Notice of Appeal”, together with all relevant supporting documentation, and the full Appeal Fee. The Notice of Appeal must specify each and every basis and supporting fact of the appeal. The Notice of Appeal and all supporting documentation must be written (audio and/or video recorded materials are not allowed and will not be reviewed) and must be in a single mailing to the ABP. If the ABP does not timely receive a Notice of Appeal and/or the full Appeal Fee, the Appellant will have forgone his/her right to an appeal and the determination shall be deemed final.
    3. Initial Review.
      1. SMT shall review each Notice of Appeal under this subsection to determine whether it was submitted in accordance with the procedure set forth herein.
      2. If SMT finds the Notice of Appeal to be deficient, the ABP shall so advise the Appellant in writing and state the reasons for this finding. At the ABP’s discretion, the ABP may allow an Appellant to resubmit an amended Notice of Appeal within a specified period of time, correcting any identified deficiencies in the original Notice of Appeal. Any SMT final decisions concerning the sufficiency of an original or, if applicable, resubmitted Notice of Appeal shall be final and the Appellant may not appeal this decision.
      3. If SMT finds a Notice of Appeal sufficient, the ABP shall forward the appeal (the “Appeal Certification”) to the applicable appellate review Committee (the “Appeal Committee”) and shall send written notice to the Appellant that his/her appeal is commencing.
    4. Determination of Oral or Written Only Appeal Hearing. For Appeals initiated under A4, SMT is authorized to determine whether the Appeal hearing will be oral or written. This determination will be conveyed in the written notice to the Appellant that his/her appeal is commencing.
    5. Notice of Hearing Determinations. Within twenty-one (21) days of receipt of the Appeal Certification and at least forty- five (45) days prior to the tentative scheduling of the Appeal hearing, the ABP shall send the Appellant a written notice of the hearing (“Notice of Hearing”) informing Appellant of the following:
      1. Whether the hearing will be written or oral;
      2. The relevant issues for consideration on appeal;
      3. The Appellant’s right to submit, in writing and no less than twenty-one (21) days in advance of the Appeal hearing additional relevant documents, statements, data, information or other evidence that he/she wishes the Appeal Committee to consider. Additional submitted materials must be written; audio and/or visual recorded materials are not allowed and will not be reviewed;
      4. The tentative scheduling of the Appeal hearing;
      5. If the hearing is oral, the Notice of Hearing shall state the time and place of the hearing. In addition, the Notice of Hearing shall inform Appellant that if the Appellant intends to offer testimony at the hearing, including his/her own testimony, the Appellant must disclose to the ABP no less than twenty-one (21) days in advance of the Appeal hearing the names, contact information and relevant relationship to Appellant or appellate issues of the witnesses and a brief description of their testimony. 
    6. Procedures for Holding Hearings
      1. Written Hearings
        1. Neither the Appellant nor his/her representative(s) shall have the right to attend any portion or aspect of written hearings.
        2. The Appeal Committee, in its sole discretion, may consider or reject any materials submitted by the Appellant and/or any other documents, statements, data, information based on relevance, appropriateness, and/or necessity.
        3. Written hearings may be conducted by written correspondence or telephone communications among Appeal Committee members.
      2. Oral Hearings
        1. No less than twenty-one (21) days in advance of the Appeal hearing the ABP will inform Appellant of any witnesses it intends to call at the hearing, together with a description of the witness and a brief description of their testimony.
        2. The Appellant and/or his/her representative(s) may, if he/she chooses, be present at oral hearings. The opportunity for the Appellant’s representative(s), including legal counsel, to address the Appeal Committee is left to the sole discretion of the Appeal Committee at the time of the hearing.
        3. The Appeals Committee may, in its sole discretion, consider, reject or limit any evidence submitted by the Appellant, evidence and/or testimony to be presented during the hearing and any other documents, statements, data, information or other evidence based on relevance, appropriateness, and/or necessity. The determination to allow any individual, including the Appellant, to testify at the hearing and/or the limitations on testimony are within the sole discretion of the Appeal Committee and can be made at any time through the end of the hearing. As is reasonably feasible, however, no less than fourteen (14) days in advance of the Appeal hearing, the Appeal Committee will inform Appellant of any testimony it will not accept, taking into consideration whether such intended testimony is duplicative, unnecessary or not materially germane to any issues on Appeal.
        4. A transcript of oral hearings shall be made.
        5. Oral hearings will close at the discretion of the Appeal Committee, taking into consideration whether the Appellant has had a reasonable opportunity to address the issues on Appeal.
    7. Findings
      1. After a written or oral hearing, the Appeal Committee will deliberate and then vote by majority on whether it will affirm, reverse, amend or remand the appealed determination.
      2. The Appeal Committee shall set forth its findings, recommendations and/or any ordered directions in writing and mail to the Appellant within sixty (60) days of the hearing.
  4. Policies Applicable to All Appeals

    1. Fair and Impartial. All appeals shall be conducted in a fair and impartial manner.

    2. No Conflict of Interest. Any individual participating in an appellate review on behalf of the ABP shall be recused if they have any substantive and material conflict of interest with respect to the appeal. If, due to conflict of interests, it is not possible to constitute an Appeal Committee, the appeal shall be referred to the Executive Committee and such a referred appeal shall be conducted pursuant to all applicable policies herein.
    3. Chair of Appeal Committee. Each Appeal Committee shall be chaired by the respective Committee Chair, or his/her designee. The designated Chair shall preside over appellate hearings and shall rule on all procedural issues. The designated Chair shall determine the manner in which evidence is presented, the length of testimony, and all other issues relating to running of the appellate hearing.
    4. Appeal Committee. Each Appeal Committee shall have a minimum of three voting members and, in addition, the ABP’s Chair, President and/or Executive Vice President may serve, ex-officio.
    5. Burden on Appellant. The burden is upon the Appellant to present sufficient evidence to the Appeal Committee to prove, by a preponderance of the evidence, that the appealed issue(s) should be overturned.
    6. Appellate Referral or Review. At the sole discretion of and based on a majority vote of a voting quorum of any given Appeal Committee, an Appeal Committee may refer an appeal to the Executive Committee or, upon a determination, request that the Executive Committee review some or all of the Appeal Committee determinations. The Executive Committee will determine, in its discretion and based on a majority vote of a voting quorum, whether it will grant or deny the referral of the appeal or request for review.
    7. The ABP reserves the right to consult with third parties, including legal counsel and other professional, to assist in the administration and analysis of any appeal.​
  5. Diplomate Status During Appeal of Revocation Determiniation

    For any appeal from a negative determination affecting the certification status of an ABP diplomate, the diplomate’s certificate shall remain current and in good-standing until the appeal is deemed final. If a negative determination, in full or part, is upheld and deemed final on appeal, the change in certificate status will be deemed to be effective as of the date of the first written notification of the negative determination.

  6. Finality

    Determinations, findings or other decisions are final and binding once the appeals procedure provided by these rules has been exhausted or the time for making an appeal has expired.

    ___

    Approved 6/81

    Revised by Board of Directors 3/18

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