How your Renewal Fee Works For You

How Your Renewal Fee Works for You 

When you renew with the Alliance for Physician Certification & Advancement (APCA) each year, you are not just ensuring that your certification is in good standing, you are reaffirming your role in APCA’s mission to set global standards of physician excellence in patient care. APCA, as an accredited non-profit organization, reinvests renewal fees directly back into work that serves our Certificants and furthers our joint mission.  

As a recognized standard for certification in medical imaging and vascular medicine, our partnership with you is more important than ever. Below are just a few examples of how your annual renewal fees help drive advances in healthcare. 

Examination Development 

A large portion of your renewal fees goes directly back to the examinations themselves – both the development and administration of examinations. As a testing organization, we hold our examinations to the highest standards to promote validity, reliability, and fairness. To achieve this, whether it’s a new examination or one we have offered for years, many things need to happen behind the scenes. Only a few of the development steps are included in this article but you can find detailed information here. Further, to protect the integrity of the examinations, we’ve chosen a test administration company that maintains a high level of diligence for secure and proper examination administration. 

  • Item Development – our examinations require questions that are written by volunteers – item writers who are professionals practicing in that specialty – who write, edit and review the items.  Items often go through several rounds of review and editing before they can be approved. 
  • Item Development Workshops (IDWs) – our item writers receive training by test development staff regarding how to write quality test questions. 
  • Job Task Analysis (JTA) – surveys are conducted every 3-5 years for each examination to allow for review of examination content to ensure they remain current with technological advances and changes in the profession. 
  • Content Outline Development – based on the results of the JTA, a content outline is developed and guides the content of the examination. 

Growth of Certification Programs and Educational Opportunities 

  • Inteleos and the Dr. Smile Medical Group signed a Memorandum of Understanding to form a long-term strategic partnership to support the development of global standards of practice and certification for CHIVA technique. CHIVA is the French acronym for “Cure conservatrice et Hemodynamique de l’Insuffisance Veineuse en Ambulatoire” (Conservative and Hemodynamic treatment of Venous Insufficiency in outpatients). 
  • The American Board of Vascular Medicine (ABVM) Vascular Medicine and Endovascular Medicine certifications were added to APCA’s portfolio of certifications and the Certification Board of Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance (CBCMR) certification and corresponding specialty examination were developed and launched. 
  • Based on request and need, the Certification Board of Nuclear Cardiology (CBNC) certification examination score results are now available upon completion of the examination at the test center.
  • Ongoing learning opportunities are available through the Point-of-Care Ultrasound (POCUS) Certification Academy which hosted the first-ever POCUS World Conference (397 participants from 53 countries and offered CMEs) and offers POCUS micro learnings (complimentary blogs, podcasts, webinars, infographics, tips, case of the week and knowledge checks). 

Awareness Campaigns 

  • Inteleos has established the Ultrasound Proficiency Grand Challenge with the goal to assure that by 2030 every user of medical ultrasound in the world will be proficient, ensuring patient safety and increasing equity in healthcare.  This program also includes a partnership with RAD-AID.  
  • Inteleos has also secured a partnership with the Kenya Women and Children’s Wellness Centre to address maternal and fetal health issues. 
  • Through the Point-of-Care Ultrasound (POCUS) Certification Academy, Inteleos has formed a partnership with Doctors Without Borders with a focus on developing a unique POCUS certification that will translate across resource-limited areas, with the goal of expanding the proficient use of point-of-care ultrasound to clinicians around the globe.  

Advancing Technology 

  • Secure online proctoring services are now available for select ARDMS and APCA examinations, with more examinations soon to be added.  
  • APCA is investing in simulation, artificial intelligence, machine learning and virtual reality to broaden access to education, training, and certification to meet clinicians where and how they practice – easing the burden on earning and maintaining certifications. 
  • APCA introduced new digital platforms to aid volunteers in their examination development roles. 
  • APCA invested in new software systems to enhance your overall customer experience, from communication to application management and document submission, our goal is to make working with us easier for you.
  • APCA partnered with Credly to provide digital badges for all awarded certifications. These badges act as a quick reference, offering the viewer a description of what was awarded, the steps taken to earn it, skills tied to the earner’s accomplishments and links to additional information about the badge and qualifications. Learn more about the program here. 

For enhanced self-serve options – log in to MY APCA to print personalized windowed examination score reports, digital ID cards, status verification letters, and upload your CMEs into the CME Bank. 

Please be sure to share any feedback on the above-mentioned programs – we welcome your thoughts, ideas and contributions! Thank you for everything you do to serve patients and improve healthcare.