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What is board certified?
Board certified means that a person is a doctor who has passed an exam qualifying him as a specialist in a certain field.
Most patients only have a vague idea of what a board certified physician is. They know that they want to see one when they have a medical concern, but they’re not quite sure why.
Various member boards have slightly different requirements, but all have the following base requirements:
- An undergraduate degree.
- Four years of education at an accredited medical school.
- A three- to five-year residency in an accredited program and proven competency in their specialty.
- A medical license.
Becoming board certified is a voluntary process, and it occurs outside of the traditional licensing process. It’s generally not specific to a specialty, although certain boards do tend to attract members from certain specialties.
Certification is an outside acknowledgment of a doctor’s expertise within his or her specialty.
Physicians must be extensively tested and peer-reviewed before they qualify for certification. Doctors are certified by members within their specialty, who can vouch for their expertise.
Additionally, board certification requires maintenance of certification for doctors to remain qualified for their certification. This involves participation in professional development activities and improvements in their practice.
Board certified example
If you are looking to find a pediatrician for your child, you likely will want to choose a doctor who is board certified. Pediatricians who are board certified have not only finished the basic educational requirements for their practice, but also are peer-reviewed by experts in their specialty and contribute frequently to the pool of knowledge in their field.
This designation makes a difference because it ensures that your child will receive the best care from someone who really knows what they’re doing when it comes to children’s medicine.
Curious about how your medical insurance will cover bills you incur when you visit your doctor? Learn more about health insurance options and how you can save some money.