ASAM applauds announcement of new addiction medicine board examination in fall of 2017

by ASAM Staff | November 30, 2016

ASAM Applauds the American Board of Preventive Medicine (ABPM) and The Addiction Medicine Foundation (TAMF) regarding new addiction medicine board examination in fall of 2017  

November 30, 2016 – Today the American Board of Preventive Medicine (ABPM) and The Addiction Medicine Foundation (TAMF) announced a major step forward in the integration of the field of addiction medicine into routine medical practice. Starting in the fall of 2017, ABPM will offer physicians who are certified by a Member Board of the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) the opportunity to become certified in the subspecialty of addiction medicine. 

“The announcement today is met with great excitement, we can now start preparing physicians for the board exam and provide resources to support them throughout their career,” said Dr. Jeffrey Goldsmith, ASAM President. “We look forward to working with ABPM, ABMS and TAMF to expand our addiction treatment workforce and provide much-needed certified specialists to care for those suffering from this disease.”

This announcement follows the recognition of the new subspecialty of addiction medicine by ABMS in October, 2015 and the approval of fellowship training in addiction medicine by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) in June, 2016.

Scheduled for July 27-29, 2017 in Dallas, Texas, the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) will hold its review course to assist physicians preparing for the fall 2017 examination. 

The ASAM Review Course in Addiction Medicine is widely recognized as the essential primer for physicians. The July 2017 course features an outstanding faculty and offers two and a half days of sessions which are mapped onto the addiction medicine exam blueprint of topics. 

The first five years that the exam is offered is the optimal time for physicians to become board certified in addiction medicine. Physicians who are already certified by any of the 24 Member Boards of the ABMS and have substantial experience in the field of addiction medicine are eligible to apply to take the examination. During the first five years the examination is given, individuals will NOT be required to complete an addiction medicine fellowship. After that, a one-year addiction medicine fellowship will be required.

Physicians interested in preparing for the ABPM Board Certification/Recertification examination should visit:

For more information about taking the ABPM Board Certification examination, visit 

For ABPM FAQ please click here.


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  1. ken gibson Jan 10, 2017 - 09:41 PM

    Took the ABAM test in 2015 and passed.Do I have to take another test? More credentials?

  2. C.K. Hebdon MD Jan 02, 2017 - 03:00 PM

    I'm interested in the comment by 'Ken,' above. I sat for the 2012 ABAM exam. What differences is there compared to the 2015 exam? Does Ken's comment suggest that 2015 Diplomates will be grandfathered into the new ABPM/ABMS and previous years' Diplomates will not?

    For many years, the ABAM and ASAM strongly intimated, if not outright stating,  that Diplomates of these prior 'Board certifications' in good standing (ie; MOC, continued payment of dues, etc.) would somehow be grandfathered into any newly approved ABMS certification in Addiction Medicine. Now, it seems, we will be given 'Special consideration'  in the paperwork required to sit for the ABPM, but not outright certification.

    Preparation for taking the ABAM required thousands of dollars and untold hours of study and the test was very rigorous, certainly as rigorous as the two ABMS certifications I hold. Passing rate, as I recall, was less than 80% of applicants for 2012 (somewhat less than 2015). 

    If my understanding of the process is correct, then we all have been duped by ABAM and ASAM. The changing of names by the ABAM organization is, in my view, an embarrassment to its members and a betrayal by both organizations which were,  we all thought,  in the mainstream toward ABMS recognition. 

    And I am not alone in this view. Discussions at recent ASAM and CSAM showed much anger and disgust.

    And make no mistake...Board Certification by ABAM will quickly fade into insignificance as credentialing committees by Hospitals, Insurance companies, Malpractice carriers, and...yes, Lawyers...ask if we are certified by ABPM in Addiction Medicine. ABAM status will be meaningless.

    ...An outrageous situation which should be hotly contested by ASAM/ABAM members and, ideally, by these organizations themselves, although their meek surrender is all too obvious.     

  3. Ken Jan 02, 2017 - 09:01 AM

    If you took the 15 test, you're fine. Any tests before that and you need to start over. 

  4. Cheryl Kennedy Dec 30, 2016 - 10:23 AM
    WHAT IF YOU WERE RECENTLY RE-certified thru an ASAM exam and have MOC up to date, do you you have to sit for the new exam to get certified?

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