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Focused Practice Designation in Minimally Invasive Gynecologic Surgery FAQs

Learn more about the MIGS Focused Practice Designation.


The focused practice designation in minimally invasive gynecologic surgery (MIGS) provides ABOG the opportunity to establish standards and assessments for this surgical technique within the field of obstetrics and gynecology. It also allows ABOG to recognize those Diplomates who have additional surgical expertise and dedicate a significant percentage of their practice to the care of women with benign and complex gynecologic diseases and manage complications using minimally invasive surgical techniques. Additionally, the focused practice designation will provide those Diplomates with special interest in minimally invasive gynecologic surgery a more focused, relevant, and pertinent continuous professional development.

No. A focused practice designation is not intended to be a form of certification since it recognizes physicians’ additional expertise in minimally invasive gynecologic surgical techniques gained through clinical experience and may include formal training. This focused practice designation is more limited in scope than those covered by subspecialty certification.

According to the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS), subspecialty certification relates to a specific component of a specialty to which a practicing physician may devote a significant portion of time. It requires physicians to complete an additional ACGME-accredited fellowship training program and pass an assessment given by an ABMS Member Board. Focused practice is an added designation to a certification recognizing additional expertise or focus gained through clinical experience. Physicians must maintain an active certification in their specialty/subspecialty. See more details on page three of a document offered by the ABMS.

Candidates for the focused practice designation in MIGS must have primary certification in Obstetrics and Gynecology from ABOG and must be meeting the ABOG MOC program requirements if they hold a time-limited certificate. Additional eligibility criteria include:

  • Candidates must meet the requirement of a minimum of three years of clinical practice with a focus in MIGS at the time of application for the MIGS exam. Those Diplomates who have completed 24 months in a MIGS fellowship program may count the length of their fellowship program towards the focused practice requirement.
  • Candidates must have completed a minimum of 20 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits in MIGS or in gynecologic subspecialty (e.g., Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery, Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility, and Gynecologic Oncology) in the last three years. CME earned by completing the annual ABOG MOC Part II Gynecology, URPS, REI, or GO articles and self-assessments will count towards the MIGS CME requirement.
  • Candidates must submit a 12-month case log documenting a practice that demonstrates sufficient depth and breadth of focused practice in MIGS. The case log must document evidence of a minimum of 100 minimally invasive gynecologic surgery procedures in patients with benign and complex gynecologic conditions as the primary surgeon. Candidates must have cases in more than one category of the case log meeting the minimum number of cases for those categories. Additionally, the cases must be ones in which the candidate was the primary surgeon and cannot include cases performed during fellowship.
  • Candidates must have an active, full, and unrestricted license to practice medicine in any and all states or territories of the United States or Province of Canada in which the candidate holds a current medical license. 
  • Candidates must have unrestricted hospital (or surgical center) privileges for a focused practice designation in MIGS. 
  • Candidates must pass a secure, computer-based examination of focused knowledge, judgement, and skills in MIGS.

The computer-based exam is scheduled for July 22, 2024, and the exam fee is $200, payable by credit card at the time of online application.

No oral exam is required.

Exam results will be posted in your diplomate portal no later than 5-7 business days after the exam.

A candidate who postpones or fails the written exam of focused knowledge, judgment, and skills in in minimally invasive gynecologic surgery must complete a new online application to be considered for the next scheduled secure, computer-based examination in MIGS and pay a new application fee.

Yes. Focused practice designation in MIGS is time-limited. Each Diplomate must enter the MIGS Focused Practice Maintenance of Certification (MOC) program in the year following successful attainment of focused practice designation and must successfully complete all assignments to maintain focused practice designation. Diplomates with non-time-limited certification in Obstetrics and Gynecology who pass the written examination for focused practice designation in MIGS must enter the Focused Practice Designation in MIGS MOC process and fulfill all the yearly MOC requirements to maintain focused practice designation.

Diplomates who hold a time-limited certificate must meet MOC requirements annually for their specialty or subspecialty as well as complete additional reading assignments focused in minimally invasive gynecologic surgery.

The Lifelong Learning and Self-Assessment article requirements for specialists and subspecialists holding a MIGS focused practice designation cover the following categories:

For Specialists

  • General obstetrics, gynecology, office practice, and four subspecialties
  • Minimally invasive gynecologic surgery
  • Patient safety and communication

For Subspecialists

  • General obstetrics, gynecology, office practice, and the other three subspecialties
  • Minimally invasive gynecologic surgery
  • Articles in the diplomate's subspecialty
  • Patient safety and communication

Yes, however you must call ABOG at 214.871.1619 and ask for the MOC Department to have the application added to your portal. Once you have achieved the focused practice designation in MIGS, you must complete the annual MOC requirements to keep your focused practice designation.

Questions? Contact the ABOG Maintenance of Certification Department at moc@abog.org or 214.871.1619.

The MIGS twelve-month case log should only include the cases in which you were the primary surgeon. If the candidate performed their side of a hysterectomy, this would count for LAVH and total laparoscopic hysterectomies as primary surgeon. Candidates may count oophorectomies at the time of laparoscopic hysterectomy toward laparoscopic oophorectomy.

If you would like access to the MIGS application task in the ABOG portal, please email moc@abog.org.

Questions? Contact the Maintenance of Certification department at moc@abog.org or 214.871.1619.