Released May 5, 2022
Cypress, CA, May 5, 2022 – The American Association of Gynecologic Laparoscopists’ (AAGL) Essentials in Minimally Invasive Gynecologic Surgery (EMIGS) validated Training and Testing Program was approved for use by the American Board of Obstetrics & Gynecology (ABOG) as an alternative to the current Fundamentals of Laparoscopic Surgery (FLS) examination to meet the standards for board eligibility.
AAGL is the premier global association in minimally invasive gynecologic surgery (MIGS) with membership of over 6.500 physicians across 110 countries. ABOG seeks to define standards and provide certification of obstetricians and gynecologists (OB GYNs) in the United States and Canada. Both organizations seek to facilitate ongoing training in best practices and systemize the qualifications of physicians to ensure the highest quality of healthcare for women.
Developed and funded by the AAGL, EMIGS is comprised of a validated cognitive examination, an accompanying web-based didactic component accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) for 10.5 AMA PRA Category 1 credits, and a manual skills training and testing platform of laparoscopic exercises specific to gynecologic surgery. EMIGS establishes standard didactic information and manual skills serving as a curriculum to guide gynecologic residents, fellows and practicing surgeons in the performance of basic and advanced endoscopic surgery. Mastery of the didactic curriculum and achievement of endoscopic skills will prepare gynecologic residents and surgeons to perform endoscopic procedures with greater skill, safety, and efficiency, and improved complication rates.
According to the EMIGS Steering Committee Chair, Nash Moawad, MD, “EMIGS is the culmination of nine years of dedication by a team of expert educators so committed to advancing MIGS that they were driven to create this exceptional training and standardized testing platform. While the FLS will still have its place, EMIGS addresses the specific complexities of minimally invasive gynecologic surgery and will now be the standard for qualifying MIGS surgeons. We are all very proud of this historic achievement and eager to share this exciting news with the OBGYN residency community.”
“One of the many benefits of EMIGS,” says EMIGS Steering Committee Co-Chair, Barbara S. Levy, MD, “is that it is a virtual platform. All exams may be scheduled and proctored remotely at the trainee’s convenience and location. This allows for equitable access to testing without the need and expense of travel, while also reducing the burden for CREOG sites.”
Executive Director of ABOG, Dr. George Wendel, shared his enthusiasm about ABOG’s approval of EMIGS as an alternative option to FLS, “We are happy to expand opportunities and options to help educate and test our residents and we are pleased that EMIGS is specialty-specific and quite innovative.”
EMIGS received support throughout its development from CREOG’s Immediate Past Chair, Dr. Mark B. Woodland, who shared, “As surgical technology evolves, it is imperative to have formative evaluation processes and outcome measures for our gynecologic surgeons in training. EMIGS presents a validated pelvic simulation platform to assess a surgeon’s progress and technical competency and has the potential to set a new standard in the education of gynecologists.”
The EMIGS platform uses a special pelvis-shaped bowl (a laparobowl) to simulate gynecologic laparoscopic surgery. AAGL plans to manufacture and donate one laparobowl to each CREOG site, along with the initial consumables for practice. The laparobowl will fit in the pelvic trainers each site has already been using for laparoscopic training.
Executive Director of AAGL, Linda Michels, states “The AAGL is committed to providing laparobowls to each of the CREOG sites this summer for training purposes. It is anticipated that testing will begin in the fourth quarter of 2022 once the programs and residents have prepared for the new test. The entire EMIGS program; Didactics, Cognitive exam, and Manual Skills exam, will be available for $525 per resident with no additional capital cost to the residency programs.”
Dr. Barbara Levy, AAGL EMIGS Committee Co-Chair, will be available at the upcoming ACOG, Annual Clinical and Scientific Meeting, May 6-8, 2022 in San Diego, CA to answer questions about this exciting new development.
AAGL is a professional medical association of endoscopic surgeons and is the global leader in minimally invasive gynecologic surgery. AAGL’s mission is to elevate the quality and safety of health care for women through excellence in clinical practice, education, research, innovation, and advocacy. Find out more about the AAGL at: www.aagl.org.