Epilepsy

Deadlines, Fees and Content for Initial Certification in Epilepsy
History and Statement of Principles

In September 2010, the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology (ABPN) approved the application sponsored by the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS), to offer subspecialty certification in Epilepsy. This was done to officially establish the field of epilepsy as a definite area of subspecialization in neurology and child neurology, and to provide a means of identifying physicians properly trained and experienced in treating epilepsy.

The actual mechanics of certification of qualified candidates have been delegated by the Board to the Committee, which operates under the supervision of and in accordance with the policies of the Board.

The examination will be administered to candidates certified by the ABPN in neurology or neurology with special qualification in child neurology. The examination will be administered at Pearson VUE testing centers. Participation in the certification program is voluntary. Certification is not required of practitioners in this field, and the certificate does not confer privilege to practice.

Certification Requirements

To achieve certification in epilepsy, candidates must hold a valid certificate in neurology or neurology with special qualification in child neurology and fulfill all of the following requirements:

  • Attestation of requisite practice experience, or documentation of successful completion of formal training requirements, as specified in descriptions of the temporary or training pathways.
  • Must meet all training requirements (if applying through training pathway) by July 31 of the year of the examination.
  • Must meet the ABPN’s licensure requirements.
  • Must be certified by the ABPN in neurology or neurology with special qualification in child neurology by December 31 prior to the examination administration.

Applicants may qualify for examination by submitting documentation of successful completion of one year of fellowship training in epilepsy completed in a program accredited by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME). The epilepsy fellow must have satisfactorily completed an ACGME-accredited neurology, child neurology, or ABPN-approved neurology combined residency prior to entering the epilepsy fellowship program. Training or exposure to epilepsy given to neurology or child neurology residents as part of their basic neurology or child neurology curriculum does not count toward the one year of epilepsy fellowship training. Training must be completed by July 31 of the year of the examination.

Temporary Criteria (Specific requirements during the “grandfathering period” 2013 through 2017)

During the “grandfathering period” (2013-2017), as an alternative to one year of ACGME-accredited fellowship training in epilepsy, applicants may qualify for examination in epilepsy if they can provide the following:

Documentation of satisfactory completion of 12 months of fellowship training in a non-ACGME-accredited epilepsy program affiliated with an ACGME-accredited neurology or child neurology residency training program. The epilepsy fellow must have satisfactorily completed an ACGME-accredited neurology, child neurology, or ABPN-approved neurology combined residency prior to entering the epilepsy fellowship program. Training or exposure to epilepsy given to neurology or child neurology residents as part of their basic neurology or child neurology curriculum does not count toward the one year of epilepsy fellowship training. Training must be completed by July 31 of the year of the examination.

OR

Attestation of 25% of practice time devoted to epilepsy beyond completion of residency training in the primary specialty for a minimum of two years.

The specialized training in epilepsy may be completed on a part-time basis, as long as it is not less than half-time; credit is not given for periods of training lasting less than one year, except under special circumstances that must be approved by the ABPN Credentials Committee. In such cases, it is the responsibility of the applicant to provide detailed documentation from the respective training directors that outlines training content, duties, and responsibilities. Each case is considered on an individual basis.

Training Pathway (Specific training requirements after the “grandfathering” period – after 2017)

After the “grandfathering” period, applicants for certification in epilepsy must:

Be certified by the ABPN in neurology or neurology with special qualification in child neurology by December 31 prior to the examination administration.

Submit documentation of successful completion of one year of fellowship training in epilepsy completed in an ACGME-accredited epilepsy program. The epilepsy fellow must have satisfactorily completed an ACGME-accredited neurology, child neurology, or ABPN-approved neurology combined residency prior to entering the epilepsy fellowship program. Training or exposure to epilepsy given to neurology or child neurology residents as part of their basic neurology or child neurology curriculum does not count toward the one year of epilepsy fellowship training. All licensing and training requirements must be met no later than July 31 of the year of the examination.

The specialized training in epilepsy may be completed on a part-time basis, as long as it is not less than half-time; credit is not given for periods of training lasting less than one year, except under special circumstances that must be approved by the ABPN Credentials Committee. In such cases, it is the responsibility of the applicant to provide detailed documentation from the respective training directors that outlines training content, duties, and responsibilities. Each case is considered on an individual basis.

Candidates who applied under the temporary criteria who fail the examination may reapply for the examination after the temporary criteria has expired.

American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology, Inc.

2150 E. Lake Cook Road, Suite 900, Buffalo Grove, IL 60089

Phone 847.229.6500 | Fax 847.229.6600