The examination needed to complete this checklist is just like a wellness exam, similar to those conducted for high school athletics, scuba diving certification, or for a U.S. Department of Transportation commercial driver’s license. Conducting this examination is similar to determining if an individual can safely operate a car, truck, motorcycle, boat or other motor vehicle.
All state-licensed physicians are qualified to perform a BasicMed exam. Advanced practice providers, such nurse practitioners, may assist with the exam but only a state-licensed physician may make the final affirmation on the checklist.
The exam is used to discuss with the individual any medications he or she is taking could interfere with his or her ability to safely operate a motor vehicle or aircraft and perform an exam of each of the items on the checklist. Based upon this discussion and exam, you as the physician then determine whether, in your medical opinion, you are aware of any medical condition that, as presently treated, could interfere with the individual’s ability to safely operate an aircraft. It is like assessing if an individual can safely operate a motor vehicle such as a car, truck, motorcycle, or boat.
A BasicMed examination is like many other physical or wellness examinations that physicians perform daily.
It is the responsibility of the pilots to understand the regulations and determine if they are eligible to fly under BasicMed.
Persons who have a medical history of, or are diagnosed with, the conditions described below as identified by the FAA, may not use BasicMed until they have been seen by an FAA Aviation Medical Examiner (AME) and have been granted a special issuance medical certificate by the FAA. If they previously held a special issuance medical certificate for any condition below, it must have been valid within the ten years prior to July 15, 2016 for the pilot to be eligible for BasicMed. In other words, if your patient has any of the conditions below, and they were not previously granted a special issuance medical certificate for that condition by the FAA within the allowed timeframe, you should advise them to contact AOPA’s Pilot Information Center about seeing an AME.
Furthermore, an individual with a clinically diagnosed neurological condition, is prohibited from exercising BasicMed privileges if, in the judgment of the individual’s state-licensed physician, the condition:
Pilots requiring a special issuance medical certificate should contact the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association for more information about seeing an AME.
The FAA’s MedXPress system is only for completing an application for an FAA First, Second, or Third Class medical certificate. If you are pursuing BasicMed qualifications, you must download and print the FAA’s Comprehensive Medical Examination Checklist.
When a pilot visits his or her physician for the BasicMed examination, the pilot information and medical history portion of medical exam checklist completed by the pilot will list any prescription or non-prescription medication that the pilot currently uses, as well as information such as the medication name and dosage. The physician will then address, as medically appropriate, any medications the individual is taking and discuss the medication’s potential to interfere with the safe operation of an aircraft or motor vehicle.
While there is no list of specific medications that are prohibited for pilots flying under BasicMed rules, certain medications are not safe to be used at all while flying and others require a reasonable waiting period after use. Physicians should be mindful of prescription and overthe-counter drugs that may impact the safe operation of a motor vehicle, in this case a private recreational aircraft. This can include, but is not necessarily limited to, the use of sedatives, psychotropic drugs, antihistamines, narcotics or any other medication that can impair cognition if used while the pilot is operating an aircraft.
Pilots, in discussion with their physician, should consult available aeromedical resources to understand potential flight hazards associated with any medications being taken, such as whether the underlying condition the medication is being taken for makes flight unsafe, or to understand side-effects that may be unnoticeable before flight but could impair the ability of a pilot to make sound decisions. In addition to the BasicMed rules, pilots taking medication must also comply with existing Federal Aviation Regulations, such as the self-grounding requirements of FAR 61.53 and FAR 91.17’s prohibition on operations while using any drug that has affects contrary to safety. AOPA’s online medical education course will include medication considerations when evaluating you fitness to fly. The final go/no-go decision is made by the pilot.