When there is a specification for annual medical examination <of a commercial driver>, is it required that the driver return to the original medical examiner or can they be seen
by their family practice doc and bring in supporting documents?
Annual Medical Examination of the Commercial Driver
The commercial driver medical examiner needs to examine the driver for their certification, re-certification and follow up exams, which will generally be guided by the period of certification you have determined and recorded on the exam form and on the medical certificate. When there is a recommendation such as in the FMCSA guidelines for “driver should have an annual medical examination” this most often refers to the driver being evaluated by their personal physicians for their specific condition. There are guidelines that indicate you may certify for a maximum of 2 years, but the driver should have an annual medical examination.
As the medical examiner, you should review this annual medical examination and/or any relevant diagnostic testing, no matter what interval you are seeing the driver for their re-certification exam. If you do see the driver for the re-certification and they have not gone for some annual diagnostic test you feel you should have, you will need to make a determination, based on other factors regarding your overall impression of driver health and public safety, whether you will disqualify the driver or temporarily certify for enough time to obtain the required testing. If I temporarily certify and they still don’t come back with the required testing, then I will disqualify until I get it. Next time I won’t be likely to temp certify unless the testing is done.