ACP Congress: Diplomate Recognition and ABVLM Update

ACP CongressWe anticipate several hundred of our now over 750 certified ABVLM diplomates to be attending the American College of Phlebology’s 30th Annual Congress in Anaheim in early November 2016.

To that end, there are two sessions specifically devoted to diplomates and the ABVLM.  Please try to attend these if your schedule allows:
  • ABVLM Diplomate Recognition – Friday, November 4 @ 8:35am-8:40am, Platinum 5-6 (General Session) immediately following Opening Remarks and the Phlebology Year in Review. 

    Diplomates will be invited to stand in place and be recognized by the several hundred Congress attendees, as Board President Dr. Zimmet offers remarks about certification in venous and lymphatic medicine.
  • ABVLM Update – Sunday, November 6 @ 8:50am-9:00am, Orange County 1-3 (Research, Registry and Accreditation concurrent session). 

    Dr. Zimmet will highlight:
  • ABVLM’s ongoing Maintenance of Certification (MOC) process which will be replacing the every 10 year recertification exam;
  • fellowship development; and
  • subspecialty recognition, including some discussion about ABMS recognition.
The ABVLM Booth (#701) will be in the Exhibit Hall where you can get your ABVLM DIPLOMATE ribbon, as well as obtain answers to any questions regarding your current MOC status or the upcoming changes in the recertification process.  Please stop by, say “Hi” to Chris Freed, Executive Director, and also see your name on the new Diplomate Wall of Recognition!

ABVLM Recertification Moves Toward Ongoing Learning Model

The ABVLM Board of Directors met in early August 2016 and discussed the 10-year Recertification Process. As many may know, there has been a great deal of discussion within several ABMS Boards regarding the future of their own decennial high-stake exams.

Our Board reviewed recent activity, especially with respect to the American Board of Anesthesiology (ABA) and the American Board of Radiology (ABR), who are both moving away from a 4-hour, every-10-year exam in lieu of an ongoing educational process for their diplomates to maintain their board certification.

The ABA has developed what they call the MOCA Minute™ process, whereby ABA diplomates review multiple choice questions on a periodic basis, get immediate feedback on their answers, and are provided with both a rationale for the answer and links to additional resources should the diplomate want to learn more on that topic.

The ABVLM now is modeling our own 10-year recertification program after the ABA’s program. Therefore, in lieu of a 4-hour exam at a test center, we intend to have no recertification exam for diplomates who are current on their Maintenance of Certification (MOC), but rather we will have MOC longitudinal assessment questions delivered to diplomates for them to answer.

This process is in active development, and we intend to have a small pilot program running in 2017 to beta test the software and question delivery mechanisms.  The ABVLM program will be similar to but not identical to the program the ABA has rolled out.  We anticipate that we will start the program in mid-2018 for all diplomates.

More details will be forthcoming, but we wanted all diplomates to know that the ABVLM is moving away from the 10-year certification exam, which we believe is not the ideal method to foster learning and facilitate the retention of knowledge. We think diplomates will find the ongoing learning program as outlined better integrates assessment and education, and should prove more useful to day-to-day practice and improving patient care.

ABVLM: Vision and Value

Do we need venous specialists? This question and more is discussed in an August 2016 article written by Board President Dr. Steve Zimmet and published in VEIN magazine.

The article reviews current education in venous and lymphatic medicine (VLM), and presents the ABVLM’s 3-step collaborative process to developing VLM educational standards and training. It goes on to discuss both the vision of the ABVLM and its value to the future of the field of venous and lymphatic medicine as well as a historical perspective regarding ABMS recognition of subspecialties.

You can link to the article in VEIN magazine here, or link to the same article in a PDF format on the ABVLM website here.


Welcome and Congratulations to Our 2016 New Diplomates

Congratulations to the 37 candidates who passed the 2016 exam (88% pass rate). There are now 755 physicians who have passed the ABVLM Certification Exam since its inception in 2008.

Proudly introducing the Class of 2016

Charlene Adkins, MD
Manu Bala Aggarwal, MD
Jiyong Ahn, MD
Nassim Akle, MD
Dr. Mir B. Ali, MD
Michael Louis Cahn, MD
Ralph L. Carullo, MD
Lisa E Esler-Brauer, MD
Steven G. Folstad, MD
James Douglas Fonger, MD
Courtney S. Green, MD
Ryan B. Greene, MD
Todd Richard Hansen MD
  Wesley R. Harden III, MD
Evan W. Harris, MD
Marlow B. Hernandez, DO
Susan A. Kanehann, MD
Sanjiv Lakhanpal, MD
Mark Langsfeld, MD
James Lee Lonquist, MD
Anne Luhan, MD
Robert E. Mazzei, DO
Michael A. Nelson, MD
Khanh Nguyen, DO
Timothy John Norton, MD

  Barry F. Oswalt, MD
David Lawrence Pinsinski, MD
Dominic Anthony Plucinski, MD
Ramachandran Ravichandran, MD
Federico M. Richter MD
Stephen Sanofsky, MD
Ziad Sara, MD
Haimesh Shah, MD
Sanjay Surath Srivatsa, MD
John T. Steele, MD
Sonny J. H. Wong, MD
Ruel N. Wright, MD


The ABVLM utilizes criterion-referenced testing rather than norm-referenced testing to determine passing scores. Criterion-referenced testing is based on the concept that candidates should be measured against the knowledge represented in each test question, while a norm-referenced test would indicate whether the test-taker did better or worse than other candidates. A criterion-referenced test is used to determine a candidate's level of knowledge in relation to a well-defined domain of content. Theoretically all test takers could pass (or fail) such an exam.

Test equating methodologies are used such that a candidate would have an equal chance of passing, assuming their knowledge base is the same, regardless of the year they take the exam.

All ABVLM exams undergo rigorous psychometric evaluation by Measurement, Inc. The 2016 exam consisted of 202 multiple-choice items. Following a detailed analysis of every item, 15 items were removed from scoring because of poor performance. The examination was then scored and analyzed. The 2016 examination had a candidate separation reliability of 0.88, which suggests it sufficiently distinguished among candidate abilities.

Please check your own ABVLM Diplomate listing in the Online Physician Lookup database.

If there are changes, you can make them yourself! Just login as an ABVLM Diplomate. Need help? Contact the HQ Office.

ISSUE 2, 2016


Phone: (877) 699-4114

ACP 30th Annual Congress
November 3-6, 2016
Anaheim, CA
Program Information

AVF 29th Annual Meeting
February 14-17, 2017
New Orleans, LA
Program Information TBD

SIR 42nd Annual Scientific Meeting
March 4-9, 2017
Washington, D.C.
Program Information

SVM 28th Annual Scientific Sessions
June 14-17, 2017
New Orleans, LA
Program Information


ABVLM Board of Directors

Steven E. Zimmet, MD, RPVI, RVT, FACPh

Robert J. Min, MD, MBA, FACPh, FSIR
Vice President

Anthony J. Comerota, MD, FACS, FACC, RVT


Lisa E. Amatangelo, MD, RVT, FACPh

Carl Black, MD

Teresa L. Carman, MD, RPVI

Antonios P. Gasparis, MD, FACS

Kathleen D. Gibson, MD

Fedor Lurie, MD, PhD, RPVI, RVT

Suman Rathbun, MD, MS, RVT, FACP, FSVM

Mel Rosenblatt, MD, FACPh

Armen L. Roupenian, MD, FACS, RVT, RPVI, FACPh

Keith M. Sterling, MD, FSIR

Copyright © 2016 - The American Board of Venous & Lymphatic Medicine. All rights reserved.
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Copyright © 2016 The American Board of Venous & Lymphatic Medicine, All rights reserved.

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