The American Board of Pediatrics, USA

The American Board of Pediatrics (ABP) was founded in 1933. It is one of the 24 certifying boards of the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS). The ABP is an independent and nonprofit organization whose certificate is recognized throughout the world as a credential signifying a high level of physician competence.

In 1933, the American Pediatric Society, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and the American Medical Association formed the American Board of Pediatrics for the purpose of examining and awarding certification to physicians who have superior knowledge in the field of the diseases of childhood.

The Board of Directors of the ABP consists of distinguished pediatricians in education, research, and clinical practice, as well as one or more nonphysicians who have a professional interest in the health and welfare of children and adolescents. The ABP strives to improve training, establishes the requirements for certification, and sets the standards for its examinations.

Certification by the ABP has one objective — to promote excellence in medical care for children and adolescents. Certification represents dedication to the highest level of professionalism in patient care. ABP certification provides a standard of excellence by which the public can select pediatricians and pediatric subspecialists. Although ABP certification is voluntary, nearly all qualified pediatricians seek this recognition.

The ABP awards certificates in General Pediatrics and in the following subspecialty areas: Adolescent Medicine, Cardiology, Critical Care Medicine, Developmental-Behavioral Pediatrics, Emergency Medicine, Endocrinology, Gastroenterology, Hematology-Oncology, Infectious Diseases, Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine, Nephrology, Pulmonology, Rheumatology, and Child Abuse Pediatrics. Certificates are awarded in conjunction with other specialty boards in the areas of Hospice and Palliative Medicine, Medical Toxicology, Pediatric Transplant Hepatology, Neurodevelopmental Disabilities, Sleep Medicine, and Sports Medicine.

Pediatricians practice the specialty of medical science concerned with the physical, emotional, and social health of children from birth to young adulthood. Pediatric care encompasses a broad spectrum of health services ranging from preventive health care to the diagnosis and treatment of acute and chronic diseases.

Pediatricians understand the many factors that affect the growth and development of children. They understand that children are not simply small adults. Children change rapidly, and they must be approached with an appreciation for their stage of physical and mental development.

The American Board of Pediatrics (ABP) certifies general pediatricians and pediatric subspecialists based on standards of excellence that lead to high quality health care during infancy, childhood, adolescence, and the transition into adulthood. The ABP certification provides assurance to the public that a general pediatrician or pediatric subspecialist has successfully completed accredited training and fulfills the continuous evaluation requirements that encompass the six core competencies: patient care, medical knowledge, practice-based learning and improvement, interpersonal and communication skills, professionalism, and systems-based practice. The ABP’s quest for excellence is evidenced in its rigorous evaluation process and in new initiatives undertaken that not only continually improve the standards of its certification but also advance the science, education, study, and practice of pediatrics.

  • Accountability to the public
  • Fairness and excellent service
  • Communication and transparency
  • Continuous quality improvement

The “North Star” for the ABP is and will remain the improvement of health outcomes for children, adolescents, and young adults (hereafter, “children”).

The ABP joins forces with other organizations and parent groups that align with our mission, each bringing its unique perspective but harmonizing our voices to advocate for enhanced quality in pediatric care.

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