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Quarterly News & Notes: Winter

January 18, 2023  |  Posted by ABIM  |  MOC, News

The Longitudinal Knowledge Assessment (LKA®) is now available in 15 specialties, including three that were introduced in January—Critical Care Medicine, Infectious Disease and Pulmonary Disease. The first set of questions for the LKA is now available, so if you’re due for an assessment this year and still thinking of participating, be sure to enroll soon so you’ll have enough time in the first quarter to complete them. Designed for busy physicians by practicing clinicians, the LKA provides convenience, flexibility and actionable feedback that allows you to put refreshed knowledge immediately into practice.

What’s new for 2023?

  • Sleep Medicine diplomates can choose the general Sleep Medicine LKA, or an Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) version that has a greater number of questions on OSA, and also includes questions on bruxism, snoring, GERD and home sleep apnea testing. Overall, this version has an approximately 70% overlap with the general Sleep Medicine blueprint.
  • Physicians practicing primarily in a hospital setting may be interested in inpatient-focused versions of the Internal Medicine LKA and traditional, 10-year MOC assessment launching in 2024. Learn more on our blog, including what you’d need to do in 2023 to ensure a seamless transition in the future.
  • If you earned your ABIM certificate before 1990, you can try the LKA for MOC. Learn more about your options here.
Physicians are using the LKA to maintain over 40,000 certificates, with more than 1,500 choosing to enroll in an LKA to regain certification in a specialty area that they had allowed to lapse. Suresh Nair, MD, the Physician-in-Chief of the Lehigh Valley Cancer Institute and Chair of ABIM’s Medical Oncology Board said, “I maintain certification in Internal Medicine and Medical Oncology, but let my Hematology certification lapse. I’ve regretted that for a while. The LKA opened a pathway that will allow me to rebuild my knowledge about hematology over time. I like that it provides instant feedback if I got a question right or wrong, along with references, that helps me know where I need improvement.”

The absolute last day to enroll this year is June 30, 2023; but waiting that long means you’ll have missed questions that you can’t go back and answer, so signing up sooner than later is a good idea. Learn more about the LKA, including its key features and eligibility on ABIM’s website and enroll through your Physician Portal.

Making our site accessible to everyone who visits it is an important inclusion effort for ABIM. To assess the current state of the website, we collaborated with the Carroll Center for the Blind (CCB) to determine our level of compliance with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.1. As part of the process, CCB assessed the full site, including the secure Physician Portal, to see how ABIM could improve in areas such as keyboard-only access, screen reader compatibility and touch access on mobile devices.

stock image of person working on laptop While many of the changes that have and will be implemented will not be apparent to many of us, they should enhance the use of the site for all.’s redesigned website incorporates WCAG guidelines to improve navigation and user experience. For example, the new design has better color contrast, making it easier to read. Additionally, the website has been updated to include metadata behind the scenes that clarifies actionable items on the page, allowing for easier integration with software, such as screen readers.

The ABIM digital team is currently exploring adding audio to portions of the website. Similar changes will be implemented for the Physician Portal. If you have suggestions for other areas of the site that could be improved for accessibility, please let us know at
stock image of checklist

During the COVID-19 pandemic, ABIM extended deadlines for Maintenance of Certification (MOC) requirements for all disciplines through 2022; for Critical Care Medicine, Hospital Medicine, Infectious Disease and Pulmonary Disease, that deadline was extended to December 31, 2023. If you are in one of these disciplines you may have requirements to complete by the end of this year to remain certified. To find your specific due dates, please sign into your personalized Physician Portal.

The Longitudinal Knowledge Assessment (LKA®) is an MOC assessment option you may want to explore, with additional flexibility in when and where you can take questions. The first set of questions is available now through March 31, meaning if you’re interested there is still time to enroll and complete the first set of questions before they expire at the end of the quarter. You must be up to date on payments for all of your certificates to access the LKA, even if you are participating in just one discipline. The annual MOC fee is $220 for the first certificate you are maintaining, with a reduced fee of $120 for each additional certificate you are maintaining. You can find out if you owe any fees by signing into your Physician Portal and navigating to the “My Payments” section.
  • If you choose to take the traditional, 10-year MOC exam, there will be a $700 test center fee in addition to your annual fee. The test center fee is waived for Transplant Hepatology, Adult Congenital Heart Disease, Advanced Heart Failure and Transplant and Clinical Cardiac Electrophysiology because the LKA is not being developed in those specialties.
  • When you are initially certified in Internal Medicine you will receive an MOC fee waiver automatically applied to your account for one year. Upon notification that you have successfully completed a year of an eligible fellowship program, ABIM will forgive one year of program/per certification fees.
Learn more about ABIM’s fee structure on our website. If you decide you no longer want to maintain one of your certificates, you must inform ABIM by January 31, 2023, that you would like to deactivate it or you will be charged the annual fee for that certificate and will be reported as “Certified” in that discipline for the remainder of the calendar year. You can opt to stop maintaining one or more of your certificates by signing in to your personalized ABIM Physician Portal.

In collaboration with practicing physicians, ABIM creates and administers at least 50 initial certification and traditional 10-year MOC assessments across nearly two dozen disciplines each year, and 15 Longitudinal Knowledge Assessments (LKA®) quarterly. This number continues to grow with the development of the LKA in additional specialty areas. For every assessment, each question is developed, reviewed, revised, approved, pre-tested and then discarded (if shown to not be working properly) or revised and tested again before finally appearing on an assessment as a scored question.

photo of Rebecca Lipner, Ph.D.

Rebecca Lipner, Ph.D.

Each question is carefully considered from every angle: should every physician in this specialty area be able to answer the question without a reference? Is it relevant to the practice in that specialty? Is it a fair question? Is there more than one correct response? Is it biased? Does it require some thought and analysis? One question can take many revisions to get through the approval process and become a scored assessment question.

“It is critically important that question writers are trained to write fair and valid questions and that the process ABIM uses to develop and vet these questions is rigorous and thorough,” said Rebecca Lipner, Ph.D., Senior Vice President, Assessment and Research at ABIM. “By so doing, we can be assured that test takers are scored only on questions that have been put through the process and have been approved by experts in the field.”

To learn how ABIM assessments are created, continue reading.