FAA Medicals : 20200319


COVID-19 and FAA Medical Exams


There has been some misinformation circulating concerning FAA Medical Exams for pilots who have traveled internationally, within 14 days prior to the exam. The Aeromedical Committee has received word from the FAA that this IS NOT accurate. Below is the FAA Bulletin sent to all FAA AME’s within the last few days: “In light of the ongoing COVID – 19 efforts, we appreciate the challenges AMEs are facing in the current practice environment. At this time, airmen medical certification procedures have not changed. All airmen medical certification examinations must be performed on the schedule specified in 14 CFR part 61.23. We are exploring contingency options during this National Emergency. In the interim, we highly encourage AMEs to follow CDC and local public health guidance. To the greatest extent possible, please try to separate well airmen from ill patients either by space or time. There is erroneous information that the FAA has directed airman flying international routes not to see an AME or complete an airman medical exam. This is simply not true. Airman who have followed FAA guidance for international flight crews (to include sanitized crew quarters and limited overseas social contact) are at low risk for COVID – 19 and should proceed with their required exam. On the other hand, if your office pre-screening identifies an airman with respiratory symptoms, please refer to CDC and local Public Health guidance.” (Source: FAA Office of Aerospace Medicine via Susan E. Northrup, M.D. Southern Regional Flight Surgeon) Therefore, as most of our pilots are at low risk for COVID – 19 infection, there should be no significant problem with obtaining an FAA Medical Exam as necessary. If you do have an AME who is unwilling to perform an FAA Medical Exam due to recent international travel, consider using a different AME for the time being. Additionally, please notify the Aeromedical Committee with the name of the AME, so that we may pass along information to the Regional Flight Surgeon’s Offices to address the issue and assist in finding a replacement AME (as needed). Lastly, some pilots on Special Issuance (S.I.) Medical Certificates may begin finding it difficult to obtain the necessary appointments with specialist, as required to maintain a S.I. Medical Certification. If you find yourself facing this problem, please contact the Aeromedical Committee ASAP.
Aeromedical Committee

19 March 2020