FMCSA on med exam rule delay: More examiners on the way, numbers will work

| April 09, 2014

med doc exam formsNearly 25,000 medical examiners are somewhere in the process of being certified and added to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administrations medical examiner registry, the agency has said in response to the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association’s request for a delay for drivers of the compliance date of the rule. 

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The agency also says the full 40,000 medical examiners won’t be needed immediately upon the May 21 deadline, as not all drivers will need recertification on or immediately after that date. FMCSA is monitoring the list, though, to “ensure that an adequate number are registered” by May 21, says agency spokesperson Marissa Padilla. 

OOIDA filed a petition with the agency this week to delay the compliance date until more medical examiners were certified and added to the agency’s National Registry of Certified Medical Examiners, saying that as of March 28, only a little more than 10,000 examiners were in the list — a number OOIDA says is insufficient, especially compared to the 40,000 examiners FMCSA said in the rule would be needed.

However, FMCSA says it is closer to meeting those goals than it seems.

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Padilla said more than 13,000 examiners are in the registry currently. An additional 4,200 are scheduled to take the test to become certified, she said, and another 19,600 have signed up to start the process of becoming certified. 

A 2012 FMCSA rule established the registry and required drivers, beginning May 21, 2014, to receive medical certification — or recertification when their current certification expires — from an examiner in the registry.

Drivers need to be medically certified once every two years, and FMCSA estimated in its rule that 40,000 examiners performing 75 exams each annually — 3 million exams a year — would cover the more than 4.4 million drivers that fall under the rule’s provisions. 

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“It is also important to emphasize that most drivers will not need a new physical exam immediately following the May deadline,” Padilla said. “Their medical certificates will continue to be valid until the expiration date that is shown on the card. Only then will the driver need to seek a certified medical examiner.” 

Click here to read OD coverage of OOIDA’s petition for the delay.

 

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  • Richard

    I just had my card updated last week. Spoke with my Dr. about whether or not she was going to be on this national registry….short answer “doubtful”. Reasoning is this legally with the new Registry and rules her Medical Malpractice insurance provider doesn’t want the additional potential for claims. For example…. driver A she has never seen, doesn’t fully reveal his/her medical history…not enough time or resources to track that medical history down….driver A is in well enough health to receive medical card today, she issues it. 6 weeks go by the underlying medical condition triggers an unfortunate accident….Insurance is worried it opens them up to being included in a large settlement, all because the Government forced unknown patients on Doctors that are already stressed to their limits. The only way for the doctors to protect themselves stay off the list or raise their rates and pay the insurance fees

  • Dave Nichols

    our industrial clinic has aid, no new driver/patients will be certified unless they apply well in advance and have full medical history provided to the clinic.
    They will process the drivers who have been their customers in the past.

  • norman ott

    Just another way to get rid of older experienced drivers and put younger drivers that can be brainwashed behind the wheel. My local doctor is not going to do exams anymore, same doctor I have been using for the last 20 years. So much BS. I wounder what the cost will be, I paid 35 dollars for my l last card in December.

  • Rick

    So where can one find this list of DR. That is certified by our government for medical exam?

  • Dave Wilhelm

    … okay so when I’m denied a New Medical Card for what ever reason, say Sleep Apnea, do I automatically qualify for Disability ? So tired of all these Regulations B/S

  • David Elliott

    Same here, my doc said it is bs, now l will have to go see another one just for medical.

  • David Boone

    My card is up in October and I am seriously considering telling little miss Annie useless ferro and her band of goons where to stick there so called safety rules at that will mark 30 years of safe driving in a cmv ever since she took over the death rates have climbed with every rule change they have made I don’t refer to them as the fmcsa any more I refer to them as the dha= death highways administration because that is all they are creating and the first time some quack of a doctor tells me that I have sleep apnea just because I have a large neck size I am GOING to slap a lawsuit against her and her band of goons because sleep apnea in the trucking industry is a scam the real reason for all the fatigue related accidents is the hours of service rules they are wrote in a way to make the us drive fatigued and they know that so theyccan make money off of people dying

  • Pingback: FMCSA on med exam rule delay: More examiners on the way, numbers will work | dotphysicalblog|Queens, NY

  • Robert

    Rick,
    In the next 3 weeks you will be able to tap a button on the Overdrive Trucker Tools app ( which is a free app for all truckers to use) to see all the medical examiners on the list. When the button is tapped it will actually pull up all examiners within a 50 mile radius of the truckers phone. There is a search tool that can and be used to search any area of the country if needed. The information is updated daily. All the trucker does next is tap the listing and the driving directions will be displayed to get to that address. If the trucker wants to call the medical examiner he just taps the phone icon button and the number is dialed automatically.
    Our goal is to continue to provide truckers with free “tools” via our app to help in the real work environment a trucker faces daily. A trucker does not have the time to pull up the government web site and navigate through the pages, which is very aggravating, to hopefully find the correct information.
    Hope this helps truckers all across the US at least quickly find the medical examiner on the list that can do the work. Hope it is not against the law to make these government regulations a little easier for truckers to deal with.
    Good Luck

  • norman ott

    Great app thanks

  • Dustin

    All these new rules and regs have become such a pain in the ass. I went to renew my med card this winter as I was laid off and figured it would be better than doing it in season. I’m glad I did. My dr that I’ve gone to for a long time, as well as all the other drs in my town will not be going on the register, so that means I have to drive 20-60 miles instead of 2. Then to top it off I drove the 60 miles, and due to yet more regs and the fact that I’m larger than a normal person at 6’5″ and 325 lbs they only gave me a 6 month card are making me do sleep studies and buy a cpap even though i only have what they classify as very mild sleep apnea. I’ve spent 400 of my own money on dr appts and the fuel to get there. All because some “expert” says that they can get me to sleep better and they know everything. I don’t have any of the symptoms and the night I took their stupid study I slept worse than I have in 10 years. I’m lucky enough to have time in the winter to deal with crap like this unlike all the guys doing OTR. Had I went in when my med card was due I would have had to take time off work to go to the numerous appointments so I would lose even more money. I want to know who’s getting rich off all these new regulations, because it sure as hell isn’t the guys having to jump through hoops to make a living driving a truck.

  • MercenaryMan

    Buy some stock In Resmed, GE, Phillips and the other CPAP companys, you can be sure the entire Medical Board that enforced and put this in place owns plenty…Im out guys, RETIRED Ive had it…Sleep Apnea is a scam and the folks in the FMCSA will all make millions off of the insider trading on the stock. When the Illegals have littered the highways with trucks, cars and bodys due to the inability to read a sign, well its sad since my safety record was exemplary.

  • Bryan

    I looked for the Overdrive trucker tool app and was unable to locate it in the App Store. Any suggestions

  • Hector Medina

    Instead of trying to take our jobs with all this bull crap of certified meds and electronic logs, clean idle trucks and all the other nonsense that the FMCSA is asking for they should be working on raising the price how much we’re getting paid for taking freight/loads from point A to point B