Practice Management: ACOG Streamlines SCOPE Office Safety Certification Program, Reduces Fees

ACOG has launched a streamlined and less expensive Safety Certification in Outpatient Practice Excellence (SCOPE) for the Women’s Health program. SCOPE, originally piloted in 2011, is a voluntary, comprehensive patient safety review program for medical offices that provide obstetric and/or gynecologic services. The program assists providers in assessing the implementation of patient safety concepts and techniques. Nearly 80 offices have been SCOPE-certified nationally, and many more applications are currently in progress.

Ob-gyns who participate in and achieve SCOPE certification for their offices are now eligible to receive ABOG Improvement in Medical Practice (Part IV) Maintenance of Certification (MOC) credits.

ACOG President Mark S. DeFrancesco, MD, is leading his office in Waterbury, Connecticut through the relaunched SCOPE certification process. In reference to the program, Dr. DeFrancesco stated, "The SCOPE program's model policies and procedures will help practices to function more effectively as they work to enhance patient safety. The review process is supportive and confidential, and SCOPE certification will distinguish offices for their success in this area.”

ACOG Vice President of Health Policy Barbara Levy, MD, says, “We’ve enjoyed hearing how SCOPE has helped Fellows improve their office safety practices, led to better teamwork and morale, and increased practices’ marketability. Based on participant feedback, we've simplified the online application process and reduced our fees; enhancing office safety has never been simpler.”

Ashley Hill, MD, of Loch Haven Ob-Gyn Group in Orlando, Florida was among the first to achieve SCOPE certification for his office. “I am a strong believer in the SCOPE program,” said Dr. Hill. “My practice was safe to start with, but nowhere near as safe as it is after the application and certification.”

“Now is the time to consider those areas within your office where safety can be improved. SCOPE can help your office team focus and lay necessary groundwork to compete in today’s marketplace where safety and accountability are stressed,” said Dr. Levy. 

Apply to Participate in SCOPE

To participate in SCOPE, an office must complete a confidential application, which is followed by a remote or on-site office review. The application specifically evaluates an office’s policies and practices related to office management, medication safety, documentation and reporting, office-based surgical procedures, and equipment.

Distinguish Your Practice as a Champion for Patient Safety

Offices that meet SCOPE criteria are granted certification, valid for three years. They will receive a certificate to display and a marketing kit that helps demonstrate their commitment to patient safety.  Included are letters to patients, health insurers, and liability insurers, as well as a press release template that can be used for local newspapers, newsletters, and the office's website. The SCOPE Certified logo can be used on the office's website, letterhead, and business cards in accordance with usage guidelines. Additionally, names of offices that achieve SCOPE certification are published on the SCOPE website as well as biannually in Obstetrics & Gynecology.


Sign up for a 15-minute coffee date with an ACOG Fellow that has gone through the SCOPE process at the 2016 Annual Clinical and Scientific Meeting in Washington, DC, scheduled for May 14-17, 2016. Contact SCOPE staff at 800.266.8043 or to reserve your spot.    

Also, on Sunday, May 15 at 3 PM, come to the ACOG Exhibit Hall Booth (#610) and listen to a member of the SCOPE Steering Committee describe the process and recent updates to the program. Staff will also be on-hand on Sunday and Monday to answer your questions.

Visit the new SCOPE website to learn more. 

SCOPE staff are here to help! Send us an email at, or give us a call at 800-266-8043 with any questions about SCOPE.

American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists
409 12th Street SW, Washington, DC  20024-2188
Mailing Address: PO Box 96920, Washington, DC 20024-9998