FMCLA Pilot Eligibility Requirements

Participation in Family Medicine Certification Longitudinal Assessment (FMCLA) is available for any current Diplomate whose 10-year examination requirement is due to be met by December 31, 2021 (physicians in their tenth year of certification)* and who meet the following eligibility requirements:

  • Completion of all certification stage requirements before December 31, 2021
  • Submission and approval of online application by March 15, 2021
  • Continuous compliance with ABFM Guidelines for Professionalism, Licensure, and Personal Conduct which includes holding medical license(s) which meet the licensure requirements of the Guidelines

Certification stage requirements will not be required in order to be approved and begin FMCLA participation in 2021. This is a one-time exception in light of the extended stage deadline that was granted in response to COVID-19 in 2020. If stage requirements that were originally due by December 31, 2020 are not completed by December 31, 2021, continued participation in FMCLA will not be allowed and will result in loss of certification.

The pilot is designed to maintain a comparable, controlled cohort of participants for program analysis and logistical purposes. Carefully defining the eligible participant group during the pilot phase of implementation is important to the overall success of the pilot including effective communications, focused participant analysis, and change management. For this reason, there will be no exceptions to participants who do not meet the pilot eligibility requirements. Data analysis from the pilot will inform future expansion of FMCLA as an alternative to the one-day examination.

Exam registration will open on December 4, 2020 at which time you will have the option to select the One-Day Family Medicine Certification Examination or the FMCLA pilot.

* The initial eligible cohorts of participants were current Diplomates whose certification was due to end December 31, 2019 and December 31, 2020. These physicians had the opportunity to register to participate in FMCLA from December 2018 through March 2019 and December 2019 through March 2020, respectively. Those from this these groups who did not register during the 2019 or 2020 open application periods are no longer eligible to register for FMCLA at this time.

FMCLA Eligibility Requirements Beyond the Pilot 

If FMCLA continues to be successful and well-received by Diplomates, we intend to apply to the American Board of Medical Specialties next year for possible full implementation as an ongoing alternative to the one-day examination beginning in 2022. We are regularly reviewing the Longitudinal Assessment feedback and are finding high satisfaction with the process and appreciation that this method of testing allows for continuous learning with less anxiety and time out of practice.