Being a professional truck or bus driver, you might have heard of DOT physical. If you are new and want to obtain a valid CDL, a DOT physical is mandatory. It is mandatory by Federal Law that makes you eligible for driving commercial vehicles.
The purpose is to ensure that CMV drivers can handle the long hours, the hassle of operating commercial vehicles, and exhausting schedules.
What is DOT Physical?
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration sets a guideline for the safe operations of commercial vehicles in the country. It is to be noted that each state has its own set of regulations and guidelines.
The purpose of the test is to evaluate your emotional fitness and general health to meet the requirements of professional driving. All drivers are required to obtain a certificate of good health upon passing the DOT medical exam as per FMCSA rules.
Keep in mind that only medical professionals, listed on the FMCSA National Registry of Certified Medical Examiners are authorized to give a certificate.
What to Expect During DOT Exam?
As long as you are fit, you don’t need to worry about the DOT exam. However, to give an overview, here is what you can expect:
- Examination of throat, mouth, eyes, and ears
- Hernia Check
- Hearing and vision test
- Check spine deformities
- Pressing on the abdomen to check for abnormalities
- Blood pressure
- Physical examination
Apart from that, you can also expect;
- Signs of obesity, alcoholism, and general appearance are also checked.
- Asked for a urine sample
- Whisper test
What to Avoid and What to Bring?
If you are going for a DOT Physical Exam, make sure to follow these instructions.
- Bring a valid driver’s license
- Avoid tobacco or caffeine one hour before your exam
- Diabetes waiver or federal vision
- Medical records from your physician
- List of Medications with doses
What’s to do if you fail?
If you fail in the DOT exam, it does not forbid you from becoming a commercial driver. Consult your doctor and discuss the condition. There are chances that you can improve it with treatment.
People having diabetes, impaired hearing or vision, and other disabilities are provided with a driver exemption by FMCSA. Your physician can only decide whether you are qualified for those programs or not.
Where to Obtain DOT Physical Exam?
Urgent Care Bronx accepts walk-in DOT physicals. Fill out the driver’s portion of the health forms. Our FMCSA-certified physician will examine you thoroughly after reviewing your medical history and perform a physical exam that includes hearing and eye tests. Moreover, a urine test will also be performed. While for heart patients, other tests may be ordered.
After all the tests are performed, you can receive your CDL medical certificate on the same day. You don’t need to pay a hefty fee, because at Urgent Care you can get DOT physical for as low as $110.
DOT physical exam is not covered by any insurance company as it is directly associated with employment. Ask your employer if they cover the expense. Otherwise, you can get your CDL certificate for as low as $110 with no hidden charges.
Dr. Faika Khan is a family medicine doctor and founder of UrgentWay in New York and is affiliated with NYU and Plainview Hospital. She received her medical degree from the New York College of Osteopathic Medicine and has been in practice for over 10 years.