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 over-the-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.
The AOPA Medical Self-Assessment Course includes medication considerations when evaluating your fitness to fly. AOPA is also continuing to work with the FAA concerning the use of certain medications under BasicMed rules.