The initial application is now open through June 1, 2023. To apply online,click here


The Hospice Medical Director Certification Board (HMDCB) serves as an important workforce initiative for the hospice field by providing a standardized comprehensive examination to assess the knowledge and skills of hospice physicians/medical directors. HMDCB also provides a community where hospice physicians can connect through frequent coffee chats and webinars, as well as receive discounts on CME events hosted by our partners.

There are currently over 1,100 certified physicians throughout the country. This includes both full-time and part-time hospice physicians, from a variety of different organizational and geographic settings, and with varied years of experience and responsibilities.

Legislation Supporting HMDCB

Recent legislation in support of HMDCB includes a new reporting requirement that was recently passed in the state of California requiring all hospices to report if their physicians are HPM or HMDCB board certified. To learn more about this requirement, click here. In addition, in a recent letter to Congressman Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) about hospice program integrity, the American Academy of Hospice & Palliative Medicine (AAHPM) recommends reporting on physicians who are HPM or HMDCB-certified and incentivizing hospice physicians to earn the HMDC credential. Review the full letter here.  

Similar to other high-quality physician certification programs, HMDCB is incorporated as an independent not-for-profit organization that administers and oversees the certification program.

Visit HMDCB’s Website


Certification for Hospice Medical Directors & Physicians

HMDCB certification is the only certification specifically for hospice physicians/medical directors. The certification provides the tools to help physicians expand their hospice knowledge and leadership skills, improve patient care, and be more effective partners with hospice administrators.   

HMDCB certification is complementary to ABMS and AOA hospice & palliative board certification, but specific to the practice of hospice medicine, as the HMDCB examination assesses additional expertise in the unique competencies to perform the role of a hospice physician/medical director, such as regulatory, administrative, legal, ethical, and hospice specific clinical skills. This certification is beneficial and available for physicians who are HPM board certified and those who are not. To learn more about the difference between these certifications, review this document or watch this brief video.

To learn more about the initial certification program, review the below resources:

Eligibility Requirements

Candidate Handbook

Content Blueprint

Employer Discounts

Value of Certification

Certificant Videos

How to Apply


Hear about the value of HMDCB-certification from a California based physician.


HMDCB Community

The HMDCB Community helps build camaraderie, community, and connection around the HMDC credential.

Certificant Coffee Chats – these free informal Coffee Chats take place bi-monthly via Zoom. Coffee Chats are a great opportunity for certificants to connect with their hospice peers throughout the country, ask hospice related questions, share stories, and receive peer support. Each chat is facilitated by a certified physician.

For HMDCs, by HMDCs Webinars – these free webinars are hosted quarterly and taught solely by certificants. All content is relevant for today’s hospice physician/medical director – topics focus on both the clinical and administrative aspects of hospice medicine.

Partner Events – HMDCB partners with Weatherbee Resources to help promote some of their hospice related CME courses. All certificants are eligible to receive a discount for these courses.

HMDCB Community


Continuing Certification Program

HMDCB is excited to announce that after two years of research, learning from other medical boards, and gathering certificant feedback, changes are being made to the Continuing Certification Program (CCP).

Starting in 2024, the CCP will transition from a high-stakes recertification exam to a longitudinal assessment model. This change will provide certificants with opportunities for continuous learning on an annual basis while eliminating the need to submit CME and visit a test center to take the recertification exam. Part of this change is to ensure that the new program is less onerous and more valuable to a certificant's role as a hospice physician/ medical director.

By participating in a longitudinal assessment on an annual basis, certificants can assess their knowledge in the five content domains of HMDCB’s Content Blueprint, discover areas of improvement, and increase their knowledge through instant feedback and reference lists.

Continuing Certification


Value of HMDCB

I would definitely encourage other hospice physicians to become HMDCB- certified. Both my hospice organization and myself are better because of my certification. The extra knowledge and confidence you gain from obtaining the HMDC credential is beneficial to patients and their families as we perform this important service for our communities. - Joseph Hines, MD FAAFP HMDC

 As our healthcare becomes increasingly more complex, it is vital to assure our community that we have competent physicians in hospice care. Certified HMDCB physicians validate their mastery of knowledge, skills and abilities through certification. They are also mentors and supporters to our future hospice physicians, and hospice organizations have a responsibility to prepare our physicians for the ever changing and challenging times ahead.   - Karen Tucek, BSN RN CHPN, Executive Director at Hendrick Hospice Care

The HMDCB certification has solidified my knowledge base necessary to perform as a competent hospice medical director. Furthermore, it has given my organization a distinction of excellence knowing that all our physicians are HMDCB-certified. It has truly enhanced the support I give to my colleagues and care we provide for our patients. -Mark Corbett, MD MA HMDC FAAHPM


Deadlines and Fees

2023 Certification Cycle for Initial Certification

Early Bird Application Window (Price: $1,150):
January 16 – March 30, 2023

Regular Application Window (Price: $1,250):
March 31 – May 1, 2023

Final Application Window (Price: $1,400):
May 2 – June 1, 2023

Exam Window: May 1 – October 2, 2023


Apply Today

Discounts are available for employers who certify multiple physicians. To learn more, visit this page of our website.