Joint Task Force of Orthopaedic Surgeons and Podiatric Surgeons

American Medical Association Resolution A-21

Improving the Standardization Process for Assessment of Podiatric Medical Students and Residents by Initiating a Process Enabling Them to Take the USMLE

Introduced by the American Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Society (AOFAS) and the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS)

Whereas, according to the National Board of Medical Examiners (NBME), “All medical boards in the United States accept a passing score on the United States Medical Licensure Examination (USMLE) as evidence that an applicant demonstrates the core competencies to practice medicine. As a result, healthcare consumers throughout the nation enjoy a high degree of confidence that their doctors have met a common standard;” and

Whereas, medical associations have long supported a uniform standard for licensing, including a public position saying that changes in licensure by non-MD/DO practitioners must be based on education, training, and experience, to ensure patient safety. This is the same position held by the American Podiatric Medical Association (APMA) and the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons (ACFAS); and

Whereas, patients, as well as referring physicians should be able to have the same high degree of confidence that Doctors of Podiatric Medicine (DPMs) have also met this common standard as they provide medical and surgical care to patients within their scope of practice; and

Whereas, to accomplish this goal, and be considered physicians, DPMs should be required to receive sufficient education and training to take and pass all three parts of the USMLE; and

Whereas, AAOS, AOFAS, APMA, and ACFAS have collaborated and agreed upon the pathway for qualified DPM graduates to take all three parts of the USMLE; and

Whereas, the decision as to whether DPM students and graduates would be permitted to take the USMLE rests with the NBME and would be based in part on whether Council on Podiatric Medical Education (CPME) accreditation standards are comparable to Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME) standards and sufficient to meet NBME requirements; and

Whereas, our AMA has the resources to objectively study these standards and if earned, its support would be beneficial to this process; and therefore be it

RESOLVED, that our American Medical Association study, with report back at the 2021 Interim House of Delegates Meeting, whether CPME accreditation standards are comparable to Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME) standards and sufficient to meet requirements which would allow DPMs to take all parts of the USMLE.