Perceived value of Board certification and the Maintenance of Certification in Anesthesiology Program (MOCA®)

J Clin Anesth. 2013 Feb;25(1):12-9. doi: 10.1016/j.jclinane.2012.09.001.


Study objective: To determine the attitudes and perceptions of diplomates of the American Board of Anesthesiology (ABA) regarding the value of Board certification, Maintenance of Certification (MOC),and the specific components.

Design: Survey instrument.

Setting: American Board of Anesthesiology, Raleigh, NC, USA.

Subjects: Diplomates of the ABA.

Measurements: A SurveyMonkey link was sent to 3,000 randomly selected 1) non-time-limited diplomates who were not enrolled in MOC, 2) non-time-limited diplomates who were enrolled in MOC, and 3) time-limited diplomates of the ABA (1,000 survey requests per group). The surveys queried demographics, attitudes about the value of Board certification, and attitudes and knowledge about Maintenance of Certification in Anesthesiology (MOCA).

Main results: 17% to 27% of diplomates from each group completed the survey. The majority of these diplomates perceived Board certification to be of value in demonstrating competence, although fewer believed that Board certification reflected competence. The elements of Professional Standing and Lifelong Learning and Self-Assessment were perceived to be significantly more relevant to the practice of the diplomates than were the Cognitive Examination and Practice Performance Assessment and Improvement activities. Diplomates demonstrated concerns about the cost and complexity of MOC, a lack of evidence that it improves practice, and a belief that the Cognitive Examination covered topics that were not relevant to their current practice.

Conclusions: Although diplomates of the ABA highly value Board certification and report that the components of the MOCA program have potential relevance to their practices, they expressed significant concerns about the program as it is currently implemented.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Anesthesiology / education*
  • Anesthesiology / standards
  • Attitude of Health Personnel
  • Certification*
  • Clinical Competence
  • Education, Medical, Continuing / methods
  • Education, Medical, Continuing / standards*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Program Evaluation / methods
  • Self-Assessment
  • Specialty Boards*
  • United States