Special Issuance Medical

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Support for medical reform grows

Advocacy | May 29, 2014

With 111 co-sponsors in the House, legislation to exempt thousands of general aviation pilots from the third class medical continues to gain momentum.

Fly Well: Changing face of aeromedicine

Pilot Magazine | May 12, 2014

Dr. Warren Silberman managed the FAA medical certification division from 1997 through 2011.

Medical reform legislation reaches milestone

Advocacy | May 06, 2014

Legislation that would exempt thousands of general aviation pilots from the third class medical certification process has achieved a new milestone with 100 co-sponsors signing on to the House bill.

FAA drafts new sleep apnea guidelines

Advocacy | Apr 01, 2014

The FAA has drafted new guidelines for dealing with sleep apnea after AOPA and others objected to a sudden policy change announced last year.

Weather Watch: Convective coverages

Pilot Magazine | Mar 10, 2014

Whether you believe in global warming or not, here’s a hard fact: the days are getting warmer as we make our way toward summer.

Fly Well: Check your undercarriage

Pilot Magazine | Feb 12, 2014

“T” is frequently paired with the word “level” and the phrase “should I take some?”

The case of Schuyler 'Sky' King

Members only | Feb 03, 2014

Schuyler "Sky" King, a law enforcement officer from Grover, Ariz., was seeing a urologist pretty regularly. He required a second class medical certificate for his job.

Senate introduces sleep apnea bill

Article | Jan 16, 2014

The Senate has introduced legislation that would require the FAA to go through the rulemaking process before imposing new sleep apnea requirements.

The case of the airman with colon cancer

Members only | Jan 06, 2014

You should know how important it is to get regular colon cancer screenings when you reach the age of 50.

Waypoints: Last day to fly

Pilot Magazine | Dec 18, 2013

Today there’s a pilot flying his Piper Super Cub low over a farm field, enjoying the view.

FAA will move forward with sleep apnea policy

Advocacy | Dec 12, 2013

During a hastily organized webinar held Dec. 12, the FAA said it will move forward with implementing its new sleep apnea policy despite overwhelming opposition.

AMEs object to sleep apnea policy

Advocacy | Dec 10, 2013

The Civil Aviation Medical Association is objecting to the FAA's proposed sleep apnea policy, warning that the evidence doesn't justify the approach.

Collateral damage, part 2

Members only | Dec 09, 2013

FAA personnel reallocations, terminated government contracts in an effort to save costs, glitches with progress on the Digital Imaging Workflow System, and the government shutdown have compounded to produce a larger-than-usual backlog of special issuance medicals for tens of thousands of pilots.

Answers for Pilots - Arthritis

Article | Dec 02, 2013

There is good news regarding airman medical certification for those who have been diagnosed with arthritis.

Sleep apnea scrutiny falls on pilots

Advocacy | Nov 27, 2013

Pilots impacted by the FAA’s proposed new obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) policy can expect to pay some $2,000 to more than $5,000 for testing and, if needed, equipment for treatment, according to an AOPA investigation.

AOPA to ask FAA to suspend implementation of new sleep apnea policy

Article | Nov 18, 2013

AOPA is asking the FAA to suspend a new policy requiring certain pilots to be screened and treated for sleep apnea before receiving a medical certificate.

Too sweet to fly

Members only | Nov 11, 2013

Diabetes mellitus that is diet and exercise controlled does not require a special issuance, so your AME may issue a medical certificate without approval from the FAA. However, you will need some documentation for your AME at the time of your next FAA physical examination.

The value of experience

Members only | Oct 07, 2013

AOPA is the only general aviation organization with a full-time staff of medical certification specialists whose primary role is to assist members with medical certification challenges.

Dos and don'ts in preparing a special issuance (waiver) packet

Article | Aug 19, 2013

If you develop a medical problem during the time period that your current FAA medical certificate is in effect, you need to go to the medical certification section of AOPA's website and see if the condition will require a special issuance waiver.

Top five dumb aviation medical examiner (AME) tricks

Article | Aug 06, 2013

Not all aviation medical examiners are created equal, and some do not act in the best interests of their pilots.

Documents pilots need to provide for conditions AMEs can issue

Article | Jul 05, 2013

Dr. Warren S. Silberman offers pointers on what you need to get your treating physician to provide to you prior to visiting your AME if you have glaucoma, chronic hepatitis C, hypothyroidism, or hypertension.

The shifting sands of medical certification policy

Article | Apr 30, 2013

The FAA Office of Aerospace Medicine recently announced changes to several policies regarding certification of certain cardiac conditions.

What is a CACI?

Article | Apr 22, 2013

The FAA physicians in Oklahoma City and Washington, D.C., amended the certification policy for a group of "low risk" medical conditions to eliminate the special issuance requirement.

New medical certification policy for heart valves, pacemakers

Article | Apr 12, 2013

Warren Silberman Former Manager, FAA Aerospace Medical Certification Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine Expert in Aerospace/Preventive Medicine Pilot since 1986 PPS participants-only:Article archives >> New medical certification policy for heart valves, pacemakers In a prior article I discussed some of the recent FAA protocol changes for heart attacks (myocardial infarction) and coronary artery disease. In this article I shall discuss changes with heart valve replacement and pacemakers.

FAA publishes changes to special issuance medical conditions

Article | Apr 11, 2013

The FAA on April 9 posted changes to the “Guide for Aviation Medical Examiners” that will streamline the medical certification process for pilots with certain medical conditions that previously required special issuance authorizations. A new program, known as Conditions the AME Can Issue (CACI), resulted in medical certification changes for pilots with arthritis, asthma, glaucoma, hepatitis C, hypertension, hypothyroidism, migraine and chronic headaches, pre-diabetes (metabolic syndrome, impaired fasting glucose, insulin resistance, glucose elevation/intolerance), and renal cancer.

Promise of airplane inspires double liver transplant recipient

Article | Mar 27, 2013

Talk about inspiration—a father inspired his daughter to go through a second harrowing liver transplant by promising to buy her the airplane of her dreams after she made it through the surgery and recovery. Thirty-year-old Julie DeStefano comes from a family of pilots, including herself, her brother, and her father, Dennis, who both own aircraft.

FAA makes positive changes for some cardiac conditions

Article | Mar 18, 2013

Warren Silberman Former Manager, FAA Aerospace Medical Certification Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine Expert in Aerospace/Preventive Medicine Pilot since 1986 PPS participants-only:Article archives >> FAA makes positive changes for some cardiac conditions EDITOR'S NOTE: We were just notified 3/20/13 that the FAA is still working through the final cardiac policy changes. When the formal policy is announced we will notify our members at that time and highlight any changes to this article.

The FAA sent a letter about my medical. Now what?

Article | Jan 28, 2013

Occasionally, a pilot who walked out of the aviation medical examiner's (AME's) office with a medical in hand will receive a letter from the FAA months later questioning the pilot's eligibility to hold a medical certificate.

Can I fly after a stroke?

Article | Jan 03, 2013

The three terms one hears when dealing with a “stroke” are cerebrovascular accident, stroke, and transient ischemic attack (TIA). In a TIA, a person has neurological symptoms lasting for several minutes up to several hours.

High blood pressure disqualifying?

Article | Nov 06, 2012

Concerned about losing your medical because of high blood pressure? Don't be spooked by marketing scare tactics: More than 64,000 airmen are flying with high blood pressure on medication.

Diabetes mellitus on oral medications

Article | Oct 26, 2012

Diet-controlled diabetes mellitus is one of the five medical conditions that your aviation medical examiner may grant issuance if you come to your examination with the proper documentation.

Medical exemption push continues

Advocacy | Oct 18, 2012

If you missed the public comment window on a request from AOPA and the Experimental Aircraft Association that would reduce the burden of the third class medical, there's still an opportunity to make your voice heard.

Six tips to get your medical faster

Article | Oct 12, 2012

Based on our frequent interactions with the FAA's Aerospace Medical Certification Division, AOPA Director of Medical Certification Gary Crump shares six tips you can do to hasten the process of wresting your medical certificate from the FAA.

The Big C: Medical certification of prostate or breast cancer

Article | Oct 10, 2012

Dr. Warren Silberman, the former manager of FAA Aerospace Medical Certification, offers insight into how the FAA views the particular treatments for prostate and breast cancer, and what you can expect when you present medical records to the agency.

Stay healthy, keep your certificate

Article | Sep 25, 2012

Can pilots fly while using certain antidepressants? How does your brain chemistry affect gross weight? Get answers at AOPA Aviation Summit.

Fly Well: Practice good strokes

Pilot Magazine | Sep 01, 2012

Stroking a cat soothes him and you, stroking egos beguiles, and doing the breast stroke in the pool exhilarates. And that’s about it for good strokes.

Special issuance authorization update

Article | Aug 31, 2012

For pilots who have a special issuance authorization, if you missed the announcement this summer, you are no longer required to carry your authorization letter with you when you fly.

Flow control and gate holds: Managing kidney stones

Article | Aug 27, 2012

One of the consequences of inadequate regular hydration is an increased risk of forming kidney stones, and although there are many reasons why "renal calculi" form, one contributing factor is a lack of water in the body to dilute the mineral compounds that are by-products of the manufacture of urine. Especially in the hot, muggy summer months when we lose so much fluid content when we sweat, failure to maintain an adequate "inflow" of H2O further depletes our water reserves and, over time, a tiny grain of mineral gets a foothold and begins to form in the kidney.

Hot air balloons, the RAF, and D.I.A.B.E.T.E.S

Article | Jun 28, 2012

What do Beaumont, Miss., hot air balloons, the Royal Air Force, and diabetes have in common? Stick around and find out, all will become crystal clear! Diabetes is on the march with millions afflicted, and a couple of pilots are taking the lead in tackling this affliction.