AOBD OCC FAQS

What is OCC?

Osteopathic Continuous Certification (OCC) is a process by which board certified DOs can maintain and demonstrate continued and updated competency in their specialty. The goal of OCC is to provide certified physicians with a process to continually assess and improve their skills and to assure patients and the public that certified physicians are being assessed through reliable and valid measures.

What is the AOBD plan for OCC?

Details of the AOBD OCC plan can be found on our website.

Who is required to participate in OCC?

All time-limited certificate holders will be required to participate in OCC.

Can I remain certified if I do not participate in OCC?

No. By choosing not to participate in OCC you are voluntarily suspending the rights to your board certification.

Do I need to register in order to participate?

Yes, every diplomate must complete a registration application as provided by the AOBD, submit a registration fee, and be approved before proceeding with the OCC process. Separate application and fees are required for the Cognitive Assessment Examination (Component 3).

Are there any new fees associated with the OCC process?

Separate fees are required for:

  1. AOBD OCC registration ($300 for 3 year cycle for AOCD Members, $900 for non AOCD Members)
  2. OSCAT subscription for PPAs ($295 for 3 year subscription)
  3. Examination fees ($1800 per examination)

I have a time limited board certification. When must I register for AOBD OCC?

All current certificate holders MUST have registered by April 15, 2013. All new diplomats must register by February 15 of the year following their primary certification examination.

Can I remain certified if I don’t participate in OCC?

No. By choosing not to participate in OCC you are voluntarily suspending the rights to your board certification.

What happens if I hold a time limited certificate and I choose NOT to participate in OCC?

If an individual is required to participate in OCC (i.e. has a certification with an expiration date), and he or she does not comply with the process, their certification is at risk. There is an appeal process and a remediation process, but ultimately, failure to comply may lead to a loss of certification, just as failure on the re-certification examination would lead to loss of board certification.

I have a “lifetime” (not time dated) board certification. Must I register for AOBD OCC?

No, if you have a non-time-limited certification, you will not be required to participate in OCC at this time. However, the AOA strongly encourages your voluntary participation. The Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB) has agreed to accept OCC for Maintenance of Licensure (MOL). If you do not participate in OCC, you may have additional requirements for MOL as prescribed by the state(s) where you are licensed.

I have a time limited board certification. When must I take the re-certification examination (Component 3 – OCC Cognitive Assessment)?

Your certificate will expire December 31 of the tenth year after issue (e.g. a 2004 certificate expires 12/31/2014). You must PASS the examination no later than the year of expiration of your certificate. You MAY take the examination one year before the expiration of your certificate. You must take the re-certification examination within the last two years of your OCC cycle (i.e. year 9 or 10).

It seems like I am already meeting OCC requirements through CME, licensure, AOA/AOCD membership and recertification exam. Are there any additional requirements that I am not already completing?

Yes, Component 4 is Practice Performance Assessment and Improvement (PPA). You will be required to complete two clinical (PPA) modules during the 10 year cycle (one of each module in years 1-5 and one in years 6-10). The PPA  modules will be available online from Osteopathic-CAT http://www.osteopathic-cat.com/. There will be an OSCAT subscription fee of $295 for 3 years.

How many Practice Performance Assessments (PPA) will be required?

Newly certified dermatologists are required to complete 2 clinical modules and 2 professionalism modules during the ten year certification cycle. One clinical module must be completed in years 1-5. A second clinical must be completed in years 6-10.

The issuance date of a current certificate will determine the transition schedule for the number of modules to be completed by currently certified diplomates. The transition schedule is located here: http://aobd.org/aobd/occ/practice-performance-assessment-modules-o-cat/

Where can I find these PPAs and how do I register?

The PPA modules are available online from Osteopathic-CAT http://www.osteopathic-cat.com/. There is an OSCAT subscription fee of $295 for 3 years.

What components need to be completed before I can take the exam?
Prior to completion of the Cognitive Assessment Examination (Component 3), the following components must be completed:

  • Component 1: unrestricted licensure, must be current and verified
  • Component 2: Lifelong Learning/Continuing Medical Education, is a continual CME process required of all diplomats. CME requirements
  • Component 4: Practice Performance Assessment and Improvement, must be completed http://aobd.org/aobd/occ/practice-performance-assessment-modules-o-cat/
  • Component 5: continuous AOA membership in good standing, must be current and verified.

What if I miss a step and don’t complete all of the requirements by the deadlines?

If the modules are not completed and prevent a diplomate from completing the cognitive assessment exam prior to the expiration of their current certificate, certification will be inactivated and so noted on the AOA Physician Profile. The diplomate will be noted as being non-compliant with OCC.

How can I track my progress on the continuous certification requirements?

The AOA is developing an online platform that will be accessed through Osteopathic.org in order to track the progress of an OCC cycle.

I have a restricted license. What happens to my AOA board certification?

A committee supervised by the Bureau of Osteopathic Specialists has been created that will monitor license suspensions on a case by case basis alongside the certifying boards.

I don’t currently practice in my field of certification. How can I meet the Component 4 requirements?

There are three professional activity pathways:

  • Full-scope clinical practice
  • Limited-scope family medicine
  • Non-clinical practice

Limited-scope and non-clinical practice dermatologists will have to develop and complete two Practice Performance Assessment and Improvement modules in topic areas relative to their current activities. Diplomates will have to identify or develop an assessment tool that provides performance data that demonstrates practice performance improvement in an area relative to the activity. These non-standard modules will have to be approved in advance by the AOBD.

I don’t provide patient care. How can I meet the OCC requirements?

Non-clinical practice dermatologists will have to complete two Practice Performance Assessment and Improvement modules in topic areas relative to their current activities. These non-standard modules will have to be approved in advance by the AOBD.

Where can I get more information?

Full information regarding AOBD OCC can be found on our website: http://aobd.org/aobd/occ/