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BasicMed Summary: New to BasicMed

Let’s get started. The steps to completing the initial BasicMed requirements are pretty straightforward.

Confirm that your most recent FAA-issued medical was valid after July 14, 2006. You can look up your record in the airmen registry to find out.

FOR CLARIFICATION: In 2008, the FAA extended the validity period of medicals for pilots under 40. To help determine your eligibility for BasicMed based on your most recent medical issue date use these guidelines:

  • Persons age 40 or over on the date of their FAA examination would meet the BasicMed requirement if their examination was on or after July 15, 2004.
  • Persons under age 40 on the date of their FAA examination would meet the BasicMed requirement if their examination was on or after July 15, 2003

NOTE: Some insurance companies now require more frequent BasicMed renewals or even third-class medicals to obtain or maintain coverage for some older pilots. We recommend that you contact your insurer for details related to your policy when considering flying under BasicMed.

Remember, you must have a current and valid U.S. driver’s license; it is required to fly under BasicMed. Learn More.

Any current and valid driver’s license issued by a State, territory, or possession of the United States can be used to meet the driver’s license requirement in BasicMed. If your driver's license has been suspended, revoked, or denied you do not meet the minimum requirements to fly under BasicMed.

Any restrictions on the driver’s license also apply to exercising pilot privileges under BasicMed. A typical example would be the requirement to use glasses or corrective lenses while driving, so that restriction would apply while flying, too.

Step 1: Download the Comprehensive Medical Examination Checklist

Review the AOPA BasicMed Pilot and Physician Guide to ensure you qualify for BasicMed, then download the FAA’s Comprehensive Medical Examination Checklist. Complete the BasicMed Section 2: Individual Information portion of the checklist before you visit your state-licensed physician.

Step 2: See Your Doctor

Take your FAA Comprehensive Medical Examination Checklist (CMEC) (from Step 1) to your state-licensed physician and get a BasicMed-specific exam that is part of the CMEC. Have your physician fill out Section 3 of the checklist. You will need this BasicMed-specific exam information each time you complete the BasicMed online course (see Step 3). Keep the completed CMEC with your logbook or in electronic format.

NOTE:

  • Any state-licensed physician may perform a BasicMed exam.
  • Seeing an Aviation Medical Examiner (AME) is not required.
  • Under no circumstances should you complete MedXPress, the online application required to pursue an FAA Medical Certificate, prior to seeing a physician for a BasicMed exam.
  • If seeing a physician who is also an AME for a BasicMed exam, be sure there is no confusion about what type of exam is scheduled and reject any request to complete MedXPress.
  • Please be aware that you are required to have a legible copy of the Comprehensive Medical Examination Checklist (CMEC) with your logbook or in electronic format to be made available to the FAA upon request.

Step 3: Complete the Online Course and Submit Your CMEC Information to the FAA

With your FAA Comprehensive Medical Examination Checklist (CMEC) available, complete the BasicMed online course. This includes completing the quiz and then filling out the online form at the end of the course with your FAA pilot information and the physician’s information from the completed CMEC. Finally, submit the online form and print your course completion certificate. AOPA will securely submit your completed course information to the FAA on your behalf.

TAKE THE BASICMED ONLINE COURSE or visit BasicmedicalCourse.AOPA.org

IMPORTANT: Using the online form at the end of the course, you must submit details from your most recent BasicMed Comprehensive Medical Examination Checklist (CMEC) to the FAA with each course completion. Earning the course completion certificate without a current CMEC and BasicMed-specific exam (that is part of the CMEC) does not meet the legal requirements to fly under BasicMed. Under the Federal Aviation Regulations, anyone who makes an intentionally false statement on the CMEC may face FAA legal enforcement action, such as revocation of their FAA certificates as well as other serious penalties.

Step 4: Keep Both Documents with Your Logbook or in Electronic Format

Download and print your course completion certificate and keep it and your Comprehensive Medical Examination Checklist with your logbook or in electronic format. It is your responsibility to maintain custody of these records and make them available to the FAA upon request. Do not send any BasicMed-specific medical paperwork to the FAA!

Step 5: Keep an Eye on Your Health

Remember, as PIC under BasicMed you must monitor your health and decide if you are fit to fly. If you experience any new medical events or a change in your health, consider grounding yourself and seek medical care.

Step 6: Go Fly

That's it! Make sure you have a current and valid U.S. driver’s license, have completed a valid flight review, and keep your course completion certificate and Comprehensive Medical Examination Checklist with your logbook or in electronic format. As PIC always assess your health before every flight.

Mark your calendar now!

You will need to retake the BasicMed online course within 24 months after your last course completion. A new medical exam is not needed at the 24-month renewal point. It is only required as part of your 48-month BasicMed renewal process. Remember, the course renews every 24 calendar months, and the Comprehensive Medical Examination (CMEC) is required every 48 months to the day. When you complete the course, you may opt in to receive a notification from AOPA about the upcoming date of your next course renewal or BasicMed-specific physical examination.

BasicMed limits to remember:

  • Your aircraft must be authorized to carry no more than six occupants
  • You must fly with no more than five passengers
  • The aircraft must have a maximum certificated takeoff weight of no more than 6,000 pounds
  • You may fly at or below 18,000 feet msl
  • You may fly up to 250 KIAS
  • You cannot not fly for compensation or hire (except flight instruction, which is allowed)

Have questions?

Call AOPA's Pilot Information Center at (888) 462-3976), Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. EST, or email [email protected].

Need more information about BasicMed and what it means for you?
Visit AOPA's free BasicMed resources.


Schedule Reminders:

Set up calendar reminders and don’t wait until the last minute; leave time to schedule appointments and take the online course before your BasicMed certificate expires. There are two timeframes to remember to fly as PIC under BasicMed:

  • Within the past 48 months to the day, you must have completed a CMEC and medical examination with a state-licensed physician. You must submit the information from this visit electronically upon completion of the BasicMed online course.
  • Within the past 24 calendar months, you must have completed an FAA-approved BasicMed online course and earned a certificate of completion.