FP recertification test lacks focus on what front-line doctors need to know

LETTER — Posted Oct. 25, 2004

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Regarding "Testing ... testing" (Article, Sept. 27): As a member of the first group of family physicians to face the maintenance-of-certification process, I was actually excited about it.

Who could argue with what should be a better method of maintaining a better level of knowledge for the benefit of our patients? That lasted until I took the test. About 75% of the questions required knowledge so esoteric and academic that I had never had to use it in 28 years of family practice.

As always, the devil is in the details. If the American Board of Family Practice could figure out what a front-line practicing family physician really needs to know and test to that level of knowledge, then there is not much wrong with MOC.

Everest A. Whited, MD, PhD, Pflugerville, Texas

Note: This item originally appeared at http://www.ama-assn.org/amednews/2004/10/25/edlt1025.htm.

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