By: Brenda Pecotte de Gonzalez, DO

When the American Osteopathic Board of Family Medicine announced the groundbreaking Early Entry Initial Certification (EEIC) pathway, I knew this was the direction I wanted to go. 

First, what makes it appealing is it is a shorter test, comparable in length to our training exams during residency. Additionally, it takes into account all the work we have been doing over the last three years. And—of course—we are able to become certified earlier.

Pursuing the now optional OMT portion of the board certification was an easy choice for me. I want my patients to know that beyond being trained in osteopathic medicine, I have gone through the process of having my skills reviewed and approved by a larger body—like any other board exam. 

Considering the EEIC pathway?

The first question that an osteopathic family medicine resident who is at an osteopathic recognized program needs to answer is: Are you going to take the osteopathic boards? If the answer is “yes” and you have taken the two required in-training exams during their residency, I can’t think of a reason you shouldn’t take the EEIC.

If you are still early in training at a qualifying residency, talk to your program coordinator about where you are with the in-training exam requirement. The OMT hands-on portion of the exam is optional regardless of taking the EEIC or the traditional exam, but I highly encourage all osteopathic family medicine residents to take the practical exam.

Need some financial support?

The American College of Osteopathic Family Physicians currently has an initiative to provide assistance for those taking both the AOBFP practical and cognitive exams.

The ACOFP Education and Research Foundation has created the Initial Certification Grant to relieve some of the financial burden for residents entering the field. The grant will award up to $1,400 for exam fees and travel expenses to residents who don’t have complete funding support from their program to take the AOBFP exams. The deadline for applications is this Friday, February 14.


  1. Mike
    thanks for your inquiry. Like any additional certification it shows a level of competency above the baseline certification (example: sports medicine, geriatrics etc). With OMM, it indicates a proficiency level. Several states and several insurance companies have requested that an individual be certified in OMM before they will pay for the service. While the AOA has fought these issues, we feel it is important to have the extra certification so to help avoid any issues with re reimbursement or privileges in the future.
    You are correct however, that as an Osteopathic Physician you have been trained to do OMT.
    Robert DeLuca President ACOFP

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