American Society of Plastic Surgeons
For Consumers

Plastic Surgery Clinical Privileges

This resource has information on granting clinical privileges for plastic surgical services based on the realities of medical practice and education of the specialist.

Training of a Plastic Surgeon


Fellowships in plastic surgery offer the surgeon an opportunity to pursue additional experiences in the basic science and clinical practice of plastic surgery. These fellowships cover a wide variety of topical areas. However, they are not required to follow any generally recognized format or any approved curriculum. Fellowship training experiences can be of variable lengths, ranging from three to 12  months in duration, and may take place in either an institutional setting or with an individual preceptor.

Continuing Medical Education 

ASPS requires that 150 hours of Continuing Medical Education (CME) must be earned during a consecutive three-year period. 150 hours, no less than 60 must be in category 1, with a minimum of 50 of the 150 hours earned in plastic surgery activities. This is required of all Candidates for Membership and Active Members, as well as the Maintenance of Certification Process of the Board.

Maintenance of Certification in Plastic Surgery Program (MOC-PS®).

Effective 1995, certificates issued by the Board are dated and will be valid for ten years but subject to participation in MOC-PS®. Certificates issued prior to 1995 are valid indefinitely. 

The key components of the MOC-PS® Program include evidence of 1) professional standing; 2) lifelong learning; 3) successful completion of cognitive examination; and 4) practice profile assessment with tracer case. The Maintenance of Certification Booklet of Information and the information posted on the Board's website is the source for all information relevant to MOC-PS®. Online participation of Maintenance of Certification Activities is required throughout the 10-year certification cycle. The Professional Standing update and a Practice Assessment in Plastic Surgery (PA-PS) module is required in years three, six and nine of the 10-year MOC-PS® cycle. 

The Maintenance of Certification Program of the Board includes these requirements:

In each of years 3, 6 AND 9, complete:

  1. One Practice assessment in Plastic Surgery (PA-PS) Module which requires the diplomate to:
    • Select one of 20 tracer procedures available.
    • Enter data online from 10 consecutive cases of a single tracer procedure such as breast reduction or carpal tunnel syndrome.
    •  Review benchmarking report.
    • Complete one MOC-approved educational activity aligned with the tracer procedure such as an online CME article or one of the MOC courses held at the national meetings.
    • Complete the Action Plan for Improvement.
  2. Professional Standing Update which requires the diplomate to:
    • List Medical license, hospital privileges, outpatient facilities, advertising material, society membership and peer evaluations. See info on "Selected for Audit" as needed.
    • Upload CME summary report(s) for the current and previous CME cycles from the ASPS website, or upload CME documentation confirming at least 150 CMEs from the last three years.>

In year 7, 8 OR 9:

  1. Finalize the online application with required documentation.
  2. Submit the six month case list on the Board's Clinical Case Log website.

In year 8, 9 OR 10:

  1. Successfully complete the 200-question computer based exam. The MOC-PS® Study Guide produced by ASPS, available at, is an excellent reference for exam preparation.