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Medical Education  |   February 2000
The Comprehensive Osteopathic Medical Licensing Examination, COMLEX-USA: a new paradigm in testing and evaluation
Article Information
Medical Education / COMLEX-USA
Medical Education   |   February 2000
The Comprehensive Osteopathic Medical Licensing Examination, COMLEX-USA: a new paradigm in testing and evaluation
The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, February 2000, Vol. 100, 105-111. doi:10.7556/jaoa.2000.100.2.105
The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, February 2000, Vol. 100, 105-111. doi:10.7556/jaoa.2000.100.2.105
Web of Science® Times Cited: 13
Abstract

Medical licensure in the United States demands a dynamic and current means to evaluate the competency of physicians seeking to practice medicine. A systematic measuring tool is required--one that is based on actual patient encounters and how physicians should apply their knowledge and skills to the clinical setting according to their level of training and professional development. Osteopathic physicians have a distinctive approach to healthcare, applying the biopsychosocial model with emphasis on the neuromusculoskeletal system. A component of this distinctive approach is a high level of knowledge and skill in the application of osteopathic manipulative treatment. Developed by the National Board of Osteopathic Medical Examiners, COMPLEX-USA is the new sequential three-level examination process for osteopathic medical licensure in the United States. The examination process is interdisciplinary and highly clinical, with even basic science components tested within a clinical context. Examination content is based on wide expert consensus and data consistent with osteopathic medical education, training, and practice. Its design is a novel multidimensional structure that emphasizes clinical problem-solving skills and osteopathic principles and practice within the context of life cycle, gender, ethnicity, and points of service. Design schemata and blueprints are included along with descriptions of strategic research and development. COMPLEX-USA represents the most appropriate pathway for initial licensure for a distinctive and unique professional: the osteopathic physician in the United States.