NC Medical Board Addresses Specialty and Board Certification Advertising Along with Other Issues

The North Carolina Medical Board met this week and discussed a number of issues of interest to the physician community.  The NCMS encourages members to provide feedback on these issues and let us know if you have any questions or concerns about the many proposed policy and rule changes that the Board is currently considering. 

Advertising of Specialty and Board Certification Rules

Almost one year ago, the Medical Board published a proposed rule to set standards for physician licensees who wish to advertise themselves as Board Certified or to say that they specialize in a certain area of practice.  Following a public hearing in November of 2009 and the receipt of many written comments from licensees and board certifying entities, the Medical Board convened a task force to address the issue and make recommendations.

Since the task force’s last meeting several changes to the originally proposed rule were made. Many of these changes appear to be driven by comments received from the American Board of Physician Specialists (ABPS) who were not specifically recognized in the Medical Board’s original recommendation. The final draft of the recommended rule can be viewed here.

Items that are underlined are additions to the original proposal; those struck through were a part of the original proposal but removed by the task force. Items that are both underlined and highlighted are the newest changes which were approved by the Medical Board’s Policy Committee on Wednesday afternoon.

In addition to having several members sit on the Medical Board’s task force, the NCMS convened its own work group to develop feedback regarding the proposed rule. Our comments to the Board can be viewed here.

Following approval by the full Medical Board, this proposed rule change should be re-published and a second public hearing held due to the substantial changes that have been made since 2009.

Proposed Changes to the Statutory Requirement for Postgraduate Training

On Wednesday, the Licensing Committee of the Medical Board approved a recommendation allowing staff to pursue a legislative change to NCGS 90-9.1 (a)(2) to require completion of 2 years of postgraduate education prior to receiving full licensure. Current statute only requires 1 year of postgraduate education for full licensure.  The Committee also recommended parity for internationally trained medical graduates, which would reduce the current requirement of 3 years postgraduate training to two years before becoming eligible for full licensure.

Proposed Re-Entry Rules

The Licensing Committee also discussed proposed rules for re-entry into practice after a licensee’s absence from practice for two or more years.  These rules have not yet been published; however the current draft is available here.

Updates to Licensing Application

The Licensing Committee recommends that question number ten on the licensee application form be re-written to reflect the following.

Federal Credentials Verification Service Requirement for International Medical Graduates

Rules may soon be filed to require applicants for licensure to submit a FCVS profile if the applicant is a graduate of a medical school approved by LCME, CACMS or COCA, and the applicant has previously completed a FCVS or if the applicant is a graduate of a medical school other than those approved by the LCME, COCA or CACMS. A copy of the proposed rule change can be viewed here.


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