|Pedorthic Organizations in the United States|
Professional Organizations Within the Pedorthic Field
Within the field of pedorthics in the United States are four organizations that contribute to the profession: the membership organization – the Pedorthic Footcare Association (PFA) - the worlds largest professional association solely dedicated to the pedorthic profession; two credentialing bodies – the American Board for Certification in Orthotics and Prosthetics (ABC) and the Board of Certification/Accreditation, International (BOC); and, the organization now handling pedorthic accrediting following its merger with the Commission on Accreditation of Pedorthic Eduction (CAPE) - the National Commission on Orthotic & Prosthetic Education (NCOPE). These four organizations are separate entities in different locations, each serving a distinct and different purpose. Each entity is governed by a separate board of directors, bylaws, incorporation guidelines and staff. However, all work cooperatively to give the pedorthic community a high level of service and professionalism.
Pedorthic Footcare Association (PFA)…
… is a membership organization, which acts as an advocate for ABC and BOC certified and state licensed pedorthists (C.Peds., BOC Pedorthists and L. Peds.) and provides valuable education, services and benefits to the pedorthic community-at-large. These include monitoring federal and state activities affecting pedorthics and promoting and protecting C.Peds., BOC Pedorthists and L. Peds. as necessary; providing publications that expand pedorthic knowledge and education on professional and business/practice; establishing alliances with other organizations and professions on behalf of pedorthics; and providing practical help in teaching health care practitioners, their patients and the consumer how pedorthics can benefit them. Professionals in the pedorthic field who are members of PFA take advantage of these benefits and services and education at substantial savings through their membership dues. PFA membership is not a credential or an indication of the individual's or company's pedorthic qualifications.
The American Board for Certification in Orthotics, Prosthetics & Pedorthics(ABC)…
...is a credentialing organization responsible for setting and updating pedorthic standards, maintaining compliance with those standards, and protecting the public in pedorthic matters. One of ABC's main focuses is credentialing individuals as certified pedorthists (C.Peds) and accrediting pedorthic facilities. Maintenance of required continuing education points and payment of a yearly renewal certification fee are required for all Certified Pedorthists to maintain their C.Ped. credential; a similar process is required to maintain accredited facility status.ABC does not have "members” but has "certificants” instead.
The Board of Certification/Accreditation International (BOC)...
...is an independent, not-for-profit agency that certifies orthotists, prosthetists, orthotic and mastectomy fitters and pedorthists, and accredits their facilities. Since its founding in 1984, BOC has been dedicated to promoting the highest standards of excellence and competence of orthotists and prosthetists and most recently pedorthists.
The National Commission on Orthotic & Prosthetic Education (NCOPE)…
...is the accreditation body for the orthotics, prosthetics and pedorthics (O P & P) profession. As such, its primary mission and obligation is to ensure educational and residency programs meet the minimum standards of quality to prepare individuals to enter the O P & Pprofession.
NCOPE serves in cooperation with the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) for accreditation of educational programs. CAAHEP is a nationally recognized non-profit organization that accredits educational programs in 17 allied health disciplines.
The CAAHEP system currently accredits 1,300 allied health education programs across the nation.