Medical Board Approves Position Statement on Advertising and Publicity

The North Carolina Medical Board voted on November 19, 2010 to approve a Position Statement on Advertising and Publicity. This Position Statement was adopted in lieu of new rules that the Medical Board intended to approve earlier this year after convening a special work group on the issue. 

The Position Statement explains that advertising or publicity that is deceptive, false or misleading constitutes unprofessional conduct under the Medical Practice Act and provides examples of advertising to include oral, written and other types of communication disseminated by or at the direction of the licensee for the purpose of encouraging or soliciting the use of the licensee’s services.  Business letterhead, envelopes and cards are all considered advertising under this Position Statement.

Board Certification should only be advertised when a physician holds current certification by the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS), the Bureau of Osteopathic Specialists of the AOA, the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada (RCPSC), or a board that meets a list of seven criteria outlined by the Position Statement.  Among these criteria are requirements that the organization requires satisfactory completion of a training program with training, documentation, and clinical requirements similar in scope and complexity to ACGME or AOA approved programs in the specialty or sub-specialty field of medicine in which the physician seeks certification.

The Medical Board also recommends that any advertisement of board certification should disclose in the advertisement the name of the board by which the physician was certified.

For more information and to view the entire Position Statement, click here.


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1 Comment

  • John B Cleek MD

    Can you delineate what documents you may need to support a non-ABMS board certification program as meeting your requirements. I am vice-president of the American Board of Bariatric Physicians (ABBM). While we do not use the term board certified, we would be curious as to supporting documents requested by NCMS. Thank you