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Program Information

ABR 2014: Trained for Competence


E Klein

G Ibbott

J Bayouth




E Klein1*, G Ibbott2*, J Bayouth3*, (1) Washington University, Saint Louis, MO, (2) UT MD Anderson Cancer Center, HOUSTON, TX, (3) University of Iowa

MO-E-211-1 Monday 3:00:00 PM - 3:50:00 PM Room: 211

Medical physicists are the only non-physician professionals recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties through certification by the American Board of Radiology (ABR). The ABR has always set high standards of clinical competency and now with the endorsement of the AAPM, is able to raise these standards by mandating that in 2014, to sit as a candidate for board certification, enrollment in an accredited physics residency program is required. This is an enormous step to elevate our profession, as now we have the means to specify only one method for achieving board certification that is through an accredited residency program, which leads to an increase of clinical competency. This will have a positive impact on our profession’s recognition. Most challenges have been met, namely the number of residency positions has increased exponentially to meet the manpower needs. In addition, funding mechanisms are being sought for government support of such training programs. However, we have to ensure that pathways for a residency and certification do not eliminate strong scientists; if for example, they do not have the prior educational pre-requisite. Our profession has always, and must continue to breed strong scientists who have clinical expertise though may not be seeking a clinical career. This requires developing skill sets that prepare scientists to be researchers or residents who can perform research. We will discuss the benefits of the 2014 mandate along with the challenges that still exist.

Learning Objectives:
1. The ABR requirements c2014: Why they’re needed and how they were established
2. Physics Residency Programs: Importance for our profession and methods to fund
3. Essential elements for competency: didactic, scientific and clinical


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