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Doctors: Specialties and Training (cont.)

Continuing Medical Education

Most states require a minimum of 25-50 hours of continuing medical education credits each year. In addition, most physicians regularly read two to three medical journals each month and attend hospital grand rounds lectures and other training and certification courses for new procedures, therapies, and regulations. Many specialty boards now also require that doctors take tests on an ongoing basis to assure that their knowledgebase is up to date.

Specialty Board Certification

To be certain you and your family and loved ones receive the best medical care available, you may want to check to see if your doctor is board certified in his or her specialty. To do this, you may contact any of these groups:

  • At the American Board of Medical Specialties, you can check on your doctor's credentials or you can call the ABMS at 866-ASK-ABMS.
  • Contact the American Osteopathic Board of Medical Examiners at 800-621-1773.
  • Contact your state's medical licensing board.
  • Call the American Medical Association at 800-621-8335.

The American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) is an organization of 24 approved medical specialty boards. 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 of medical specialists.

Medically reviewed by Joseph Palermo, DO; American Osteopathic Board Certified Internal Medicine


American Board of Medical Specialties. What is the ABMS?.

Plantz, S.H., N.Y. Lorenzo, and J.A. Cole. Getting Into Medical School Today. 4th ed. Arco; 1998.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 7/19/2016

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