Starting in January 2008, the American Board of Thoracic Surgery (ABTS) replaced its Recertification process with Maintenance of Certification (MOC) process. MOC is intended to give the public assurance that certified specialty physicians are maintaining high standards of clinical care throughout their career. For that reason, the Board requires that all Diplomates, including those who were certified before 1976 and hold life-time certificates, participate in MOC. The only exception is for those Diplomates who have notified the Board of their retirement and/or disability.
The ABTS MOC process is based on a 10-year cycle with a 5-year benchmark that Diplomates need to meet. During the fifth year, verification of licensure and hospital credentialing will be required. In addition, Diplomates are expected to take and complete the SESATS exercise. By the tenth year, Diplomates are expected to take and pass a secure, online exam. In addition, Diplomates will need to provide documentation of practice improvement and references, along with verification of licensure and hospital credentialing.
A summary of the four MOC components can be found below and specific MOC requirements for each Diplomate can be found here.