Reference for Program Directors and Residency Coordinators
New Process for Program Directors regarding 2021 Senior Residents
The Board is pleased to announce that the administration of the Written Examination was moved from October to May beginning in 2020, allowing senior plastic surgery residents the ability to take the examination prior to graduation.
Personal Leave Policy
If you have any questions regarding the Board’s training, examination or certification requirements, please contact the Board Office at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Board requires Program Directors complete 2 online processes for all graduating residents:
Program Directors complete Preliminary sign off and verify that senior residents are on track to graduate in June
May 11, 2021
2021 graduating residents take Written Examination
July 1, 2021
Program Directors complete Final sign off and verify residency completion and ability to function as an independent physician
Examination results provided to candidates only if Program Director “signed off” the resident
View full timeline
Thank you for all your efforts to help residents transition from residency training to Board certification. The processes are different and the experience and knowledge that you provide is crucial. Many program directors and coordinators are new to the process and believe that the Residency Review Committee for Plastic Surgery (RRC-PS) program requirements cover everything during residency and that Board requirements are not effective until after graduation. This couldn’t be farther from the truth. There are Board requirements that must be met during residency training. Failure to follow these requirements may delay or deny the resident admissibility to the Board’s certification process. Several of the requirements that repeatedly cause issues are explained below.
Resident Registration and Evaluation of Training Form
The Board Office works each year to identify all graduating senior residents and this usually results in the discovery of numerous issues of missing evaluations and approvals. The most frequent missing documentation is an approved Resident Registration and Evaluation of Training Form. This is required of all residents including residents in Integrated programs.
- For Integrated residents the Resident Registration and Evaluation of Training Form should be submitted and approved during the first year of training.
- For Independent residents the Resident Registration and Evaluation of Training Form should be submitted and approved before beginning an Independent plastic surgery residency.
The Resident Registration and Evaluation of Training Form can also be found on the Residents tab.
The Board has established training requirements for transfers into an Integrated program. All transfers of any type at any level must be approved by the Board prior to the transfer.
No transfers are allowed into Independent plastic surgery programs. As of July 1, 2015, the Board eliminated the 3 year combined/coordinated pathway into plastic surgery residency training. No resident may transfer into an Integrated residency at the beginning of the PSY-IV level unless they have completed full residency training in General Surgery, or other approved prerequisite pathway sufficient to qualify for certification in that surgical discipline or completed a minimum of 3 years in another Integrated residency program. This is to ensure that all of the requirements have been met to allow the resident to enter the ABPS certification process. Prior to the transfer taking place, the resident must submit the following to the Board Office for review and approval:
- Letter from the current program director indicating the exact dates of training and monthly rotations that will be completed at the time of the transfer;
- Letter from the accepting Integrated plastic surgery program director indicating the acceptance of the transferring resident, at what level of training the resident will start and how any deficiencies in the required rotations will be completed; and
- Completed Resident Registration and Evaluation of Training Form, Processing Fee as listed in the Fee Schedule and photocopy of medical school diploma.
Domestic, International and Observational Elective Rotations
Residents must have no more than 12 weeks of elective rotations for the duration of plastic surgery training (Independent or Integrated). Elective rotations include domestic elective or observational rotations and international elective or observational rotations.
For residents to receive credit for international rotations, approval must be given by the ABPS, the RRC-PS and the DIO. The request for approval must be received at least 90 days prior to the start of the rotation. Failure to do so may result in the rotation not counting towards the 48 weeks of clinical rotations per year required by the ABPS.
The following must be submitted to the Board Office:
- RRC-PS Application/Letter sent to the RRC-PS
- RRC-PS approval letter
- Letter addressed to the Board's Executive Director, Keith E. Brandt, MD, requesting ABPS approval - detailing the resident's name, PSY level, dates of rotation, faculty member accompanying the resident, if applicable
For research rotations during training, the Board will allow a total of 12 weeks of research during a six-year program and allow a total of 6 weeks of research during a three-year program. These research weeks can be considered as a part of the required 48 weeks of training per training year.
All training requirements must be completed for a 48-week full time residency training year.
The staff of The American Board of Plastic Surgery, Inc. continues to work virtually. If you have any questions, please email email@example.com. You will receive a response within 2-3 business days. We ask for your patience during the next few weeks. Thank you.
2020-2021 Booklet of Information