The darkness within the circle represents the condition in which a person finds him or herself when dependent on or addicted to alcohol, nicotine or other drugs. The candle represents the physician whose skill, compassion and knowledge of the science of Addiction Medicine assists the addicted or drug dependent individual and family find new life, signified by the rays of light.

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ABAM offers a Transitional Maintenance of Certification program for its current diplomates and a public listing of physicians who hold active ABAM certification status. In March, 2016 the American Board of Medical Specialties formally recognized addiction medicine as a multi-specialty subspecialty. Future certification examinations in addiction medicine will be administered by the American Board of Preventive Medicine.