June 28, 2021


Raleigh, N.C. (June 28, 2021) – The American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) has approved a subspecialty certificate in Adult Cardiac Anesthesiology (ACA), to be administered by the American Board of Anesthesiology (ABA) as early as 2023.

As a subspecialty, Adult Cardiac Anesthesiology has experienced significant growth in recent years, along with demand for physicians with expertise treating patients with advanced cardiac disease. Applications to ACGME-accredited ACA fellowship programs are up more than 30 percent in the last five years, driving the demand for certification in this subspecialty.

“Certification gives anesthesiologists who care for adult heart patients a path through which to be recognized for their exceptional expertise, while demonstrating their commitment to lifelong learning to advance quality clinical outcomes for their patients,” said ABA Secretary David O. Warner, M.D.

Physicians with an ACA subspecialty certification will be acknowledged as experts in the imaging, diagnosis, physiology, pharmacology and management of care for adults whose cardiac disease requires leading-edge techniques, interventions and the latest treatment technology.

Development of the committee and exam infrastructure to support this new subspecialty certification is already underway with support from the Society of Cardiovascular Anesthesiologists (SCA), which advocated for the new subspecialty.

SCA has documented a decade-long rise in demand for specialized cardiac anesthesiology care in the U.S., due to a growing degree of disease prevalence (48 percent) in adults 20 years of age and older, and the availability of technological advancements.

The exam development process is expected to take approximately two years. The exam content outline and eligibility requirements will be posted on the ABA website as soon as they are developed and approved. Registration for the inaugural exam, projected to be administered in fall 2023, will open in spring 2023.

ABA Media Contact:
C. Michelle Taylor, CCM

About the American Board of Anesthesiology

Our mission is to advance the highest standards of the practice of anesthesiology. As the certifying body for anesthesiologists since 1938, we work with physicians to elevate practice standards and foster exceptional patient care. We administer initial and subspecialty certification exams as well as the Maintenance of Certification in Anesthesiology® (MOCA®) program, which is designed to promote lifelong learning, a commitment to quality clinical outcomes and patient safety. Based in Raleigh, N.C., we are a nonprofit organization and a Member Board of the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS).