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Antiquated Healthcare System Limiting Patient Access to Highly Skilled Physicians in the Middle of COVID-19 Crisis

TAMPA, FL – Today’s COVID-19 crisis is putting serious stress on our healthcare system as it relates to patient access to highly skilled and licensed physicians. Due to an antiquated system, hospitals across the nation are currently turning away highly skilled and licensed physicians, solely based on which organization they chose for physician board certification. Legacy hospital bylaws and credentialing rules do not meet the standards of care needed in the 21st century and are diminishing the capacity of care at a time of crisis.

As we face the COVID-19 healthcare crisis, we are learning that some of the American Board of Physician Specialties (ABPS) doctors are applying and volunteering to hospitals and are being denied for not meeting decades old rules in support of the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) – the largest physician certifying body and monopoly that has too long controlled our hospital and physician staffing.

“We were disturbed to learn that highly skilled and licensed physicians, that did not choose the Goliath organization to belong to, are being denied the right to care for our COVID-19 patients. This discrimination against experienced, licensed physicians, is taking place at a time where we are graduating medical students early, calling in retirees, nurse practitioners and physician assistants to meet this staffing crisis,” stated Lewis Marshall, MD JD FACP FAADM FAAEP and past President of the American Association of Physician Specialists. “This should be particularly disturbing to all in healthcare, especially as we have some of the most brilliant physicians, particularly in emergency and disaster medicine.”

The American Board of Physician Specialties physicians have been denied throughout the country. In New York State, physicians were denied hospital job applications solely based on whom they chose to be certified by. Hospitals that denied them include, Mount Sinai in NYC, Jamaica Hospital among others. They were also told by hospital staffing agencies not to bother with NYU Langone, NYP or Northwell Systems.

In Detroit hospital staffing organizations such as Alliance Recruiting Resources, Inc. have announced the urgent need of emergency medicine physicians to combat COVID-19. They are also requiring that they must be ABMS emergency medicine certified only – denying patients access to top notch licensed physicians. It has also been reported that Teledoc, the oldest and largest telemedicine platform is turning away non ABMS physicians telling them that insurance companies will not reimburse for their services.

“Physician board certification must maintain high standards and is key to providing higher levels of patient care,” stated Lewis Marshall, MD, JD. “Certification should not be a monopoly that denies patient access to highly skilled and licensed physicians.”

Established in 1952, the American Board of Physician Specialties (ABPS) is the official certifying body of the American Association of Physician Specialists Inc. (AAPS) a 501(c)6 organization headquartered in Tampa, FL. The ABPS certifies qualified physicians, both allopathic and osteopathic, in 20 specialties. ABPS sets rigorous standards of physician board certification and recertification, validating physicians’ skills, knowledge and commitment. To learn more about ABPS Member Boards visit