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Orthotist & Prosthetist

 What is an ABC Certified Practitioner?

​As an ABC practitioner, you are certified to independently provide or supervise the provision of patient care.

 ABC's Certified Orthotist and Prosthetist Scope of Practice details the specific functions of certified practitioners. This includes patient assessment, formulation of a treatment plan, implementation of a treatment plan, follow-up and practice management.

 Additionally, certified practitioners are required to support and conform to the ABC Code of Professional Responsibility which promotes and assures the overall welfare of the patient and the integrity of the profession.  

 Credentials

You have a choice of pursuing the combined Written exam or the two single discipline exams pathway to achieve your practitioner certification. After you have met the requirements and passed the exam(s) along with the discipline specific Clinical Patient Management (CPM) exam, you will earn your Certified Orthotist (CO) or Certified Prosthetist (CP) credential. Once you have met the requirements and passed all of the certification exams for both disciplines, you will earn your Certified Prosthetist Orthotist (CPO) credential.​

 International Recognition

​The International Society for Prosthetics ​and Orthotics (ISPO)has awarded ABC and the National Commission on Orthotic and Prosthetic Education (NCOPE)​ Category I recognition. 

The Category I recognition validates the ABC/NCOPE pathway for its Certified Prosthetist Orthotist certification program. With this recognition the ABC/NCOPE CPO pathway is recognized throughout the world as having met the highest international educational standards in existence today. ABC is the only credentialing body in the United States to receive Category I recognition from ISPO.  

 ABC Student & Resident Awards

We have donated funds for two O&P young professional awards with the Orthotic and Prosthetic Education and Research Foundation (OPERF). 

The ABC Student Award for Academic Excellence will award $1,000 to ten exceptional O&P practitioner students each year. The funds are to cover educational expenses including tuition, lab and materials fees, books and/or computer time. For more details and to apply, visit the OPERF website​

​Application Deadline: October 1

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The ABC Resident Travel Award will award $2,500 to four current residents (or practitioners who completed their residency in the last three years) who wish to present their Directed Study report or project at the Academy Annual Meeting. For more details and to apply, visit the OPERF website.

​Application Deadline: August 1

 

 Eligibility

You must meet the following eligibility requirements to be eligible to take the ABC practitioner certification exams. Please refer to the ABC Practitioner Candidate Guide ​for specific eligibility requirements.

There are two pathways for certification:

Combined Discipline Written Exam Pathway

You may pursue this pathway if you are a recent graduate of an orthotic and prosthetics master's degree program. The education requirement detailed below is required for eligibility. A clinical residency is required for eligibility for the single discipline simulation and CPM exams.

​Single Discipline Pathway

You may pursue this pathway after you have completed both the education and clinical residency requirements detailed below. In this pathway, your exams are specific to the discipline you are applying for, either Orthotics or Prosthetics.

Education Requirements (both pathways)

Clinical Residency (single discipline pathway)

 Application

​Once you have met the eligibility requirements, submit your application online.

You can take your exams in any order, except for the combined Written exam which is taken before your residency completion.

You will need the following documentation, which can uploaded to your online dashboard once you start the application process or you can email certification@abcop.org

  • Official master's degree transcript

For more information regarding the application process, please refer to the ABC Practitioner Candidate Guide.

Retaking an Exam or Registering for an Additional Exam:  Submit your registration online​.​

 Exams

Written Multiple Choice Exam
The three-hour, 165 question, multiple choice exam assesses your knowledge of patient and practice management. Knowledge assessed on the written exam includes anatomy, physiology, biomechanics, kinesiology, disease process, pathologies, material science, ethics and professionalism.

Combined O&P Written Multiple Choice Exam
The three and a half hour, 200 question, multiple choice exam assesses your knowledge of patient management. Knowledge assessed on the exam includes anatomy, physiology, biomechanics, kinesiology, disease process, pathologies, prescription criteria, material science, ethics and professionalism.

Simulation Exam
The three-hour interactive exam uses seven simulated case scenarios to test your analytic and clinical problem solving skills. The cases include topics such as prescription criteria, device recommendation, technical implementation and follow-up protocols.

The Written and Simulation exams are computer based and offered every other month at 350 Prometric testing center locations nationwide. Check out the testing locations in your area.  

Clinical Patient Management (CPM) Exam
There are three hands-on practical assessments​ of your knowledge and skills through direct examiner and patient model interaction in a clinical environment. You must perform specific tasks while demonstrating and describing the orthotic or prosthetic recommendation, fitting criteria, patient instructions and follow-up plans involved in the provision of care.   

The CPM hands-on practical exam is offered three times a year at the ABC Testing Center in Tampa, Fla.

Exam Preparation
We created numerous resources to help you prepare for your ABC practitioner certification exams. Please click here to access these resources​.​

 Fees & Dates

Fees:  The following fees are required for each discipline 

Single Discipline Pathway

​Fees
​Application (non-refundable)*​$250
​Written Exam​$250
​Simulation Exam​$250
​Clinical Patient Management Exam​$700
​Late Fee**​$75
 
*The application fee is  a one-time fee required once per discipline. 
 
**Applications submitted after the application deadline for the applicable exam cycle will be subjected to the late fee.

Combined Discipline Written Exam​ Pathway

​​Fees
​Initial Application*​​$250
​Combined O&P Written Exam​$300
​Application 2 (Orthotics or Prosthetics)*​$100
​Simulation Exam (Orthotics or Prosthetics)​$300
​CPM Exam (Orthotics or Prosthetics)​$775
​Application 3 (Orthotics or Prosthetics)*​$100
​​Simulation Exam (Orthotics or Prosthetics)​$300
​CPM Exam (Orthotics or Prosthetics)​$775
​Late Fee**​$75
 
*The application fees are non refundable
 
**Applications submitted after the application deadline for the applicable exam cycle will be subjected to the late fee, which is non refundable.

Annual Fee (required once certification is awarded): $275 and will be prorated for your first year.  Due by December 1st.

Written a​nd Simulation Exam Dates and Deadlines

​Exam Cycle​​​​ Application Deadline ​Residency Deadline
February 10-15, 2020 December 1, 2019 January 1, 2020
April 6-11, 2020February 1, 2020 March 1, 2020
June 8-13, 2020 April 1, 2020 May 1, 2020
August 3-8, 2020June 1, 2020July 1, 2020
October 12-17, 2020August 1, 2020September 1, 2020
December 7-12, 2020October 1, 2020​November ​1, 2020​​​

Exam Locations: The exams are offered at over 350 ​locations nationwide. Check out the testing locations in your area.

Important Reminder:  You may apply for the combined Written exam immediately after graduation; however, you must complete your residency by the residency deadline of your desired exam cycle.  We will allow an additional 30 days after the residency deadline for NCOPE to mark your residency complete.

Clinical Patient Management (CPM) Exam Dates and Deadlines

Winter Exam Dates ​Application Deadline ​Residency Deadline
Orthotics: January 10-11, 2020 November 1, 2019 December 1, 2019
​​Prosthetics: January 24-25, 2020 November 1, 2019 ​December 1, 2019
​Summer Exam DatesApplication Deadline​Residency Deadline
Orthotics:  July 23-25, 2020March 1, 2020April 1, 2020
Prosthetics:  July 30-Aug 1​, 2020March 1, 2020April 1, 2020
​Fall Exam Dates​Application Deadline​Residency Deadline
Orthotics: ​September 25-26, 2020July 1, 2020​August 1, 2020
Prosthetics: ​October 9-10, 2020​July 1, 2020​August 1, 2020​

Exam Location:  The CPM exams will be held at the ABC Testing Center in Tampa, FL.