The Designation of Focused Practice in Hospital Medicine is offered in conjunction with the American Board of Internal Medicine.  This designation, which became available to qualifying ABFM physicians in 2009, is designed to recognize excellence among those Diplomates whose practice emphasize care for patients primarily in a hospital setting. 


How do I Obtain My Initial Designation in Focused Practice in hospital medicine?

The examination for physicians seeking initial designation is offered bi-annually. If you are interested in seeking initial Designation in Focused Practice in Hospital Medicine, you will need to meet the following requirements to sit for the examination and gain designation status.

  • Current and continuous ABFM Family Medicine Certification
  • Verification of at least three years of unsupervised hospital medicine practice experience in the United States or Canada that fully meets the requirements of one of the qualifying pathways:
    • Direct Patient Care Pathway (i.e., full-time hospital practice):
      • Completion of a minimum of 1,000 hospital patient encounters (limited to one encounter per patient per day) per year in the last three years, or 3,000 encounters in the last three years 
      • Submission of Hospital Medicine Verification Form signed by Supervisor at hospital(s) to attest to patient encounters
    • Clinical/Systems Pathway (i.e., full-time hospital medicine professional activity with part-time hospital practice):
      • Completion of a minimum of  250 hospital patient encounters (limited to one encounter per patient per day) per year in the last 3 years, or 750 encounters in the last three years 
        • at least 75% of patient encounters must comprise of total clinical activity and
        • at least 50% of the remaining non-clinical professional time must be directed toward improving the care of hospitalized patients
  • Attestation by the Diplomate and a senior hospital officer at the practicing hospital verifying active clinical practice in the hospital setting, including the required patient encounters, within a given time period
  • Completion of six hospital medicine related activities in the last 10 years, of which four activities must have been completed in the last three years and one must have been a Performance Improvement (PI) activity, to see a full list of approved Hospital Medicine Activities, log into your Physician Portfolio
  • Submission of an online application with appropriate fee
  • Achieve a passing score on the Designation of Focused Practice in Hospital Medicine Examination

How Do I Maintain My Designation of Focused Practice in hospital medicine?

The examination for physicians seeking continuing designation is offered bi-annually.  The Designation of Focused Practice in Hospital Medicine is 10 years in duration.  If you are interested in maintaining your Designation of Focused Practice in Hospital Medicine, you will need to meet the following requirements to sit for the Designation of Focused Practice Hospital Medicine Examination and maintain designation status.

  • Current and continuous ABFM Family Medicine Certification
  • Submission of an online application with appropriate fee
  • Achieve a passing score on the Designation of Focused Practice in Hospital Medicine Examination 

Once you are successful on the Designation of Focused Practice in Hospital Medicine Examination, you will enter into a new period of designation.


My Designation of Focused Practice in Hospital Medicine has Lapsed

If you have previously held Designation of Focused Practice in Hospital Medicine and it has lapsed, you can still regain designation.  If you meet the requirements below, you may regain designation no matter how long it has been lapsed.

  • Current and continuous ABFM Family Medicine Certification
  • Submission of an online application with appropriate fee
  • Achieve a passing score on the Designation of Focused Practice in Hospital Medicine Examination

How Do I Get Started?

If you are interested in obtaining, maintaining, or regaining your Designation of Focused Practice in Hospital Medicine you may access the online application for the Designation of Focused Practice in Hospital Medicine Examination under "Spotlight Programs" in your Physician Portfolio.

For additional information, please contact Jodi Johns at [email protected] or 859-429-7379.