CAP Survey Leads to Program Changes

May 11, 2020
Online Survey

In February, ABO conducted a survey of all CAP participants from 2019. As the first group of Diplomates to take part in the new MOC program and experience the triannual assessments, this feedback is important in evaluating the effectiveness of the program, the value it brings to our Diplomates and suggestions for improvement. We are excited to share the results with you and to announce several changes to the CAP program.

The survey was sent to all Diplomates who participated in CAP in 2019 and responses were recorded for any Diplomate who completed at least one assessment. Specific topics covered in the 8-question survey included navigation, study and preparation, topic content, time allotment and informational value. Overall, responses were exceedingly positive while also offering constructive feedback for program enhancements.

While each survey question provided useful information for measuring the success of CAP, several questions in particular offered insight for improving the effectiveness and value for participants. Below is a summary of those critical questions as well as a sample of verbatim responses given regarding the overall experience with CAP.

  • I enjoy the CAP assessments. It is a forced review of material and I find the process challenging. This is much better than preparing for a major examination.
  • Effective tool to aid in life-long learning
  • Thank you for your time in preparing these assessments.  They are relevant to what practicing doctors should stay on top of.
  • It’s actually a fairly stressful experience, but I appreciate the references. I have learned through the process
  • References are too long, too much to read.
  • I have started to look forward to the assessments because I learn and it’s enjoyable. It would be nice to have more time and have a better system to locate answers within the references
  • I think there should be a printout of the questions that we missed so that we can look the information up at a different time. 
  • CAP has definitely helped me improve my clinical skills.
  • It would be good to have each one available longer than 4 months.

When CAP was first introduced, the ABO Board of Directors anticipated that it would be an evolving program, adapting when necessary to better meet the needs of our Diplomates. CAP was developed via guidance from emerging ABMS continuous assessment pilot programs and feedback from Diplomate focus groups” stated Dr. Cathy Hines, Director of Education and Assessment for ABO. “Our goal is to make board certification a more meaningful, convenient, and less costly program. And as we grow in our knowledge of how best to achieve that goal, CAP will continue to evolve to better serve our Diplomates.” Our survey results, along with new updates from ABMS member board pilot programs, offers the first opportunity to make positive enhancements to CAP that will improve the experience for Diplomates while also better supporting the goal of continuous learning.

We are pleased to announce the following changes that will take effect immediately.

  1. For each CAP assessment, the time allotted per question will be increased from 5 minutes to 10 minutes.
  2. Each MOC cycle will be extended to 4 years.
    • Diplomates who successfully complete all requirements by the end of the 3rd year will not be required to complete any MOC activities in the 4th year. This will be a “year off” before beginning a new MOC cycle after the 4th year.
    • Diplomates who do not complete all MOC requirements by the end of the 3rd year will be given the opportunity to complete any outstanding requirements during the 4th year. This will be a “remediation year” to catch up on any missing MOC obligations including CAP assessments, CE, SAMs or the QIA. If all requirements are met during this time, the Diplomate will begin a new MOC cycle after the 4th year.
  3. In the future, Diplomates will be able to access a report upon completion of an assessment that lists any question they missed along with a reference. While we’re unable to release the actual question and possible answers, we will include enough information to guide you to the specific topic.
  4. ABO will be creating a new area within our website at where Diplomates may access all reference materials for CAP assessments any time after the assessment has launched. This will allow Diplomates to go back and review reference materials after completing an assessment or from older assessments. We anticipate having this new section of the website available by the end of June.

We hope you find these changes to be beneficial and that they allow for a more flexible and valuable MOC experience. While we could not address all suggestions at this time due to NCCA accreditation requirements and alignment with ABMS program structures, our focus remains on helping Diplomates stay current through continuous learning and sharing of important new information for clinical practice. We will continue to monitor new developments and Diplomate feedback and may announce additional updates in the coming months.



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