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CDL Drivers Medical Review   
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Subject: CDL Drivers Medical Review

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MEDICAL REVIEW BOARD
Another important aspect of our reauthorization proposal is the creation of a standing medical review 
board to provide the Agency with expert medical advice on driver qualification standards and guidelines,
medical examiner education, and research, thereby enhancing our ability to adopt medically sound and up 
to date regulations. 

In the past, we have assembled expert medical specialists on an ad hoc basis to review the standards and
guidelines for qualifying truck and bus drivers. 

Many of the standards in place now were adopted in the 1970s or earlier. A standing review board will 
greatly enhance the Agency’s ability to adopt regulations that reflect current medical advances. 

Establishment of a medical registry would respond to the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), 
which issued eight safety recommendations in September 2001, requiring that FMCSA establish comprehensive
standards for qualifying medical providers and conducting medical qualification exams.

Last Congress, S. 1072 established a medical review board based on the Federal Aviation Administration 
(FAA) model for pilot standards. 

Neither FMCSA nor FAA believes the FAA model to be an appropriate one for CMV drivers. 
The sheer number of drivers and differences in the age and health characteristics of the 
driver population make this model an untenable one for FMCSA. 

The FAA has 6,000 authorized aviation medical examiners to perform yearly exams on approximately 
270,000 pilots. 

FMCSA estimates that approximately 300,000 medical examiners perform exams on approximately 
6.4 million CMV drivers on a biennial basis. 

While I appreciate the Committee’s inclusion of the medical registry provision, 

I urge the Committee to rework the review board model and provide adequate funding to maximize our 
ability to set appropriate medical standards for CMV drivers.


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