An ABC Certified Pedorthist is a healthcare professional who is specifically educated and trained to manage comprehensive pedorthic patient care. ABC's Certified Pedorthist Scope of Practice document details the specific capacity the certified individual can practice. This includes patient assessment, formulation of a treatment plan, implementation of the treatment plan, follow-up and practice management. An ABC certified pedorthist fits, fabricates, adjusts, or modifies devices which reflect his/her education and training. ABC’s Certified Pedorthist credentialing program is accredited by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA.)
The profession of pedorthics is the provision of patient care and services by or under the direction and supervision of an ABC Certified Pedorthist to provide the application of a pedorthic device for the prevention or amelioration of painful and/or disabling conditions of the foot and ankle. A prescription is required for any pedorthic device, modification, and/or prefabricated below the knee orthosis addressing a medical condition that originates at the ankle or below.
To be eligible to take the ABC exam, individuals must meet the specific education and experience requirements established by ABC. Applicants must:
Possess a high school diploma, GED or college degree
Successfully complete Levels 1, 2, and 3 of an NCOPE approved pre-certification pedorthic educational program
Document a minimum of 1,000 hours of patient care experience in pedorthics obtained either before or after completion of the pedorthic educational course.
Guidelines for 1,000 hours of Pedorthic Patient Care Experience:
The 1,000 hours of patient care experience requirement serves as the clinical training portion of the pedorthist’s education. It is optimal if the 1,000 hour requirement is fulfilled after completion of a NCOPE approved pedorthic educational program; however candidates can use patient care experience gained prior to the completion of their education program.
The intent of the 1,000 hours of patient care experience is to provide the student with practical application of the knowledge, skills and competencies gained during their educational program. This is most optimally achieved if the experience takes place within an organization which primarily provides pedorthic or pedorthic/orthotic patient care services. If a candidate’s experience takes place in a setting that is not primarily engaged in pedorthic and/or orthotic patient care services, their experience will be evaluated on an individual basis to determine whether it meets the intent of the requirement.
The experience acquired to be a therapeutic shoe fitter can count toward the pedorthic patient care experience; however only 250 hours of patient care experience that is limited to fitting therapeutic shoes can be used. The remaining 750 must be in comprehensive pedorthics.
The examination to become a Certified Pedorthist is a three hour, multiple-choice computer based exam which consists of 165 items designed to measure the candidate’s knowledge of pedorthics. The exam tests the candidates on pedorthic assessment, implementation, practice management, ethics and professionalism.
Once the application has been received, reviewed and approved, all logistical information including a list of sites and an explanation of the test site selection process will be mailed to the registered candidate by the testing service. Once receiving a "candidate status", applicants will choose the date and location for their exam.
The written examination is held via computer-based testing (CBT). Computer-based testing is a method of administering tests in which the responses are electronically recorded. Computer-based testing makes use of a computer instead of a pen and paper exam.
All requirements must be satisfied prior to the application deadline. Individuals who have met the educational and experiential requirements may submit an application for approval as a candidate for certification. Applicants that have been evaluated and deemed to have satisfied all eligibility requirements are assigned a "candidate" status. The candidate is given a three year eligibility period in which to take and pass the examination. The candidate is limited to four attempts at the exam within their eligibility period. After receiving a candidate status, applicants will choose the date and location for their exam.
The process for applying:
1) Apply Online (for first-time applicants or retake candidates)
For first time applicants, please fill out and mail/fax the application form for first-time applicants. For those candidates who need to retake an examination, please register for the exam using the exam retake registration form.
2) Enclose the required documentation with your completed application:
A copy of your high school diploma, GED or college transcript
A photocopy of the official certificate of completion from the NCOPE approved pre-certification course
3) Register for the examination
4) Submit the application to: ABC P.O. Box 34862 Alexandria, VA 22334-0862
Please note overnight services such as UPS and FedEx do not deliver to P.O. Boxes.
Please refer to the ABC Certified Pedorthist Book of Rules & Candidate Guide for additional information.
*The exam is offered every other month at 250 locations nationwide. For a list of testing locations in your area, please click here for Available Testing Locations.
Individuals who successfully complete the education, experience and examination requirements prescribed by ABC for pedorthic certification are conferred the credential of Certified Pedorthist (C.Ped.).
If you have questions or need more information about ABC Certification, contact
Samlane KetevongManager, Credentialing Programssketevong@abcop.org(703) 836-7114 x 221
May PhoummithoneCertification Program Assistantmayp@abcop.org(703) 836-7114 x 229