How to Plan & Prepare to Pass Your MyEMCert

August 10, 2021
The most significant change in emergency medicine maintenance of certification is upon us! In Spring 2021, ABEM went live with the new MyEMCert. This is wonderful progress, as the ABEM MyEMCert modules are much more relevant and practical to our day-to-day practice of emergency medicine.

Updated August 2021

How can I prepare for the MyEMCert?

The simple answer is to do what you do every day: practice emergency medicine. 

Much of the content that appears in the MyEMCert modules focuses on frequent diagnostic and management decisions you make as an emergency medicine physician. 

But if you want to eliminate worry and decrease anxiety about the MyEMCert, consider subscribing to the MyEMCert Qbank

Before you subscribe to a resource, let’s talk more about what the MyEMCert Exam actually is, the content you’ll be expected to know, when you have to take it, and how you’ll take it. 

How does the new MyEMCert affect me?

ABEM created this great tool where you enter your current certification end date and it tells you the requirements to complete your maintenance of certification. 

How is the MyEMCert formatted?

It is administered in modules. You’ll be required to complete 4 modules within a 5-year period.

For now, the plan is to release 8 modules (each module has more than one version).

The MyEMCert presentation-based modules include the following:

  • Abdominopelvic
  • Abnormal vital signs and shock
  • Trauma and bleeding
  • Thoracorespiratory
  • Neurology
  • Social and behavioral health
  • Head and neck (coming in 2022)
  • Nontraumatic musculoskeletal (coming in 2022)

There is also a Key Advances module, which is sprinkled into each of the other modules.

You’ll be familiar with the format of the modules. The 50 questions are multiple-choice questions—the same format that you’ve seen on the initial certification exam and the in-training exam.

Let’s put this all together

You are ready to take your first module on Abdominopelvic.

Questions 1–40 are multiple-choice questions that focus on topics such as endometritis, diverticulitis, ruptured AAA, pyelonephritis, and prostatitis. 

A question may look like this (taken from Rosh Review’s MyEMCert Qbank):

A 32-year-old woman presents with nausea, dysuria, and right flank pain that has progressively worsened over the last 4 days. She has not had similar symptoms in the past and has no significant medical history. On examination, she has a temperature of 38.2°C, heart rate 106 bpm, and blood pressure 128/72 mm Hg. She has mild suprapubic and right flank discomfort with palpation. Urinalysis reveals positive nitrites and leukocyte esterase with 50–75 white blood cells/hpf and 3+ bacteria. Pregnancy test is negative. She is given intravenous fluids and ondansetron with improvement of her nausea. What is the best treatment for this patient?

A. Ceftriaxone 1 g intravenously, single dose

B. Ciprofloxacin 500 mg twice daily for 7 days

C. Nitrofurantoin 100 mg twice daily for 7 days

D. Trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole 160/800 mg twice daily for 5 days

All you have to do is to select the best answer!

About 5–10 of the questions are case-based, meaning there will be the same clinical scenario for a set of 3–5 questions. 

Tip: If you study for the MyEMCert with the Rosh Review MyEMCert Qbank and complete all of the questions, you can reference your previous practice exams while taking the actual exam using the search engine tool. Check out this demo from Adam Rosh:

Each MyEMCert module also includes a section on Key Advances. These questions are taken directly from clinical policy alerts, practice advances, and suggestions from the literature.

Current Key Advance modules in the MyEMCert (linked to ABEMs synopsis) include (as of August 2021)

A Key Advance question on the MyEMCert may look something like this (taken from Rosh Review’s MyEMCert Qbank):

A 21-year-old man presents to the ED after being bitten by a tick on Cape Cod. He has no complaints and no rash. You suspect that the tick was present for more than 48 hours. Which of the following is the most appropriate treatment plan?

A. Ceftriaxone 125 mg IM x 1 dose

B. Doxycycline 100 mg PO BID x 21 days

C. Doxycycline 200 mg PO x 1 dose

D. Observation

All you have to do is to select the best answer!

What does it look like if I pass a module?

After you complete a module, a percentage score will appear along with a Pass or Fail.  According to ABEM, there is no specific passing score, rather each module has its own cut score. The pass score for the MyEMCert modules is likely to be in the upper 80% to lower 90%. 

What happens if I don’t pass a MyEMCert module?

The good news is if you do not pass a module on your first attempt, you immediately can retake a different version of the module (the content will be different). According to ABEM, you have three attempts to pass the module. If you do not pass after three attempts, you have to retake the module the following year.

Key takeaways
  1. The MyEMCert is a major advance for maintenance of certification in emergency medicine
  1. Preparing for the MyEMCert modules includes doing what you do every day: read and practice emergency medicine

If you want to have a resource by your side or use it to prepare for the MyEMCert, consider subscribing to Rosh Review’s MyEMCert Qbank.

By Adam Rosh

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