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FMCSA Publishes Medical Examiner Rule

In April, FMCSA published its final rule on the National Registry of Certified Medical Examiners (NRCME). The rulemaking establishes training, testing and certification standards for medical examiners who certify CMV drivers for their CDLs. It also will create a national online registry of examiners who have met the certification requirement. The final rule is effective on May 21, 2012 and compliance is required beginning on May 21, 2014. Additional information is available on FMCSA’s NRCME website.

Under the rule first proposed in 2008, FMCSA also will maintain the National Registry of Certified Medical Examiners to help drivers find certified examiners. The final rule also requires medical examiners to identify drivers they have examined to FMCSA.

Under the final rule, healthcare professionals who perform medical examinations for interstate truck and bus drivers must be trained, tested and certified on the specific physical qualifications that affect a driver’s ability to safely operate the vehicle.

In 30 days, FMCSA will post its uniform training and testing standards for medical examiners at nrcme.fmcsa.dot.gov. At that time, health care professionals, drivers, employers, law enforcement officers and the public can review the training standards and sign up to receive updates on the implementation of the rule.

By May 21, 2014, all certified medical examiners must be on the National Registry database, and drivers must obtain a medical examination from a certified examiner. Medical examiners who fail to maintain federal standards will be removed from the registry. To allow time for testing and training centers to prepare their curricula and receive FMCSA approval, healthcare professionals seeking to become certified examiners can begin registering on the National Registry Website this summer.

For more information on the NRCME final rule, go to www.regulations.gov; the docket number is FMCSA-2008-0363.

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