Certification for Hospice and Palliative Medicine Specialists
Physicians specializing in hospice and palliative medicine have several certifications available to them beyond their primary board certification: ABMS, AOA, and HMDCB.
There are different pathways to become certified in Hospice and Palliative Medicine depending on your primary board or experience.
ABMS: The initial certification exam in Hospice and Palliative Medicine for allopathic physicians is adminsitered by the American Board of Internal Medicine. Learn more about eligibility and registration details through your primary certifying board. The initial certification exam is offered in the fall every other year (even numbered years).
AOA: Learn more about the eligibility criteria and required exams to become AOA board certified in Hospice and Palliative Medicine. The exam is offered once every August.
Hospice: The Hospice Medical Director Certification Board (HMDCB) to administer a certification that is complimentary to ABMS and AOA certification but specific to the practice of hospice medicine. The HMDCB examination assesses additional expertise in the unique competencies to perform the role of a hospice medical director, such as regulatory, administrative, legal, ethical competencies, and clinical skills appropriate for hospice patients.
Continuing Board Certification
Once a certification is obtained, it must be maintained and in some cases require reexamination. You must follow the guidelines of your primary certifying board to maintain your certification in Hospice and Palliative Medicine.
- ABMS: Maintenance of Certification program
- AOA: Osteopathic Continuous Certification
- HMDCB: Maintenance of Certification
Looking to earn CE credits for your recertification requirements? Turn to AAHPM's products and resources to help you maintain your board certification.
Value of Certification
Certification is widely considered the gold standard of expertise in medicine because of its unique physician-directed approach for assessing qualifications. While medical licensure sets the minimum competency requirements, board certification demonstrates a physician's expertise in a particular specialty and/or subspecialty of medical practice.
Although certification is sought and earned by physicians on a voluntary basis, it is recognized by government, healthcare systems, insurers, and patients themselves as an essential tool to judge that a physician has the knowledge, experience, and skills for providing quality health care within a given specialty or subspecialty.