There is general lack of understanding of the role played by the American Medical Association in the formation of new specialty boards, for which there are existing AMA standards, as compared to the formation of new specialty societies, for which such standards do not exist.
"Essentials for Approval of Examining Boards in Medical Specialties," as approved by the AMA and the Advisory Board for Medical Specialties, was published in the Nov 15,1965, issue of The Journal for the study of all concerned. Only those American medical specialty boards approved by this mechanism are listed, both in the American Medical Directory of the AMA and in the Directory of Medical Specialists of the Advisory Board. The above "Essentials" lists the 18 primary boards and the one affiliate board currently approved.
Professional people may establish any specialty board they desire, and there is, of course, no obligation on the part of any