Released on Sep 17, 2020

Updates from the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS)

The American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) serves the public and the medical profession by improving the quality of health care through setting professional standards for medical specialty practice and certification in partnership with its 24 certifying Member Boards, including the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM). Two recent announcements are important to note for ASGE members and GI Fellows (see below):

ABMS Announces Progressive Leave Policy for Residents, Fellows

Starting in July 2021, all ABMS Member Boards with training programs of two or more years duration will allow for a minimum of six weeks away once during training for purposes of parental, caregiver, and medical leave, without exhausting time allowed for vacation or sick leave and without requiring an extension in training. Member Boards must communicate when a leave of absence will require an official extension to help mitigate the negative impact on a physician’s career trajectory that a training extension may have, such as delaying a fellowship or moving into a full, salaried position.

The development of the new ABMS Policy on Parental, Caregiver and Family Leave was initiated following a report from the Accreditation Council on Graduate Medical Education’s (ACGME's) Council of Review Committee Residents in June 2019. ABMS and ACGME co-sponsored a workshop on resident and fellow parental and family leave this past February that brought together more than 80 multidisciplinary stakeholders to explore this issue and make recommendations for improvement. Following the workshop, an ABMS Task Force on Parental Leave was established to develop the policy.

The newly approved policy offers ABMS Member Boards the flexibility to create a parental, family, or medical leave protocol that best suits the training required for their specialty and/or subspecialty.

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Longitudinal assessments and Similar Formative Assessment Strategies

All 24 American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) Member Boards are implementing either longitudinal assessments or similar formative assessment strategies that serve as alternatives to the highly secure, point-in-time examinations of knowledge. Some boards already have transitioned to these alternative approaches.  Boards who have had initial experiences with these alternative assessment programs include the American Board of Pediatrics, American Board of Obstetricians and Gynecology, American Board of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation and American Board of Anesthesiology

The transition to these approaches has offered boards unique opportunities to work with their specialty societies to develop continuing certification and/or continuing professional development activities that satisfy continuing certification requirements.   ASGE continues to work with our sister GI Societies and ABIM in its formation of a future longitudinal assessment program for gastroenterologists. 

Click here for more information from ABMS

About Gastrointestinal Endoscopy
Gastrointestinal endoscopic procedures allow the gastroenterologist to visually inspect the upper gastrointestinal tract (esophagus, stomach and duodenum) and the lower bowel (colon and rectum) through an endoscope, a thin, flexible device with a lighted end and a powerful lens system. Endoscopy has been a major advance in the treatment of gastrointestinal diseases. For example, the use of endoscopes allows the detection of ulcers, cancers, polyps and sites of internal bleeding. Through endoscopy, tissue samples (biopsies) may be obtained, areas of blockage can be opened and active bleeding can be stopped. Polyps in the colon can be removed, which has been shown to prevent colon cancer.

About the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy
Since its founding in 1941, the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (ASGE) has been dedicated to advancing patient care and digestive health by promoting excellence and innovation in gastrointestinal endoscopy. ASGE, with more than 15,000 members worldwide, promotes the highest standards for endoscopic training and practice, fosters endoscopic research, recognizes distinguished contributions to endoscopy, and is the foremost resource for endoscopic education. Visit and for more information and to find a qualified doctor in your area.


American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy
3300 Woodcreek Drive Downers Grove, IL 60515
P (630) 573-0600
F (630) 963-8332

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