After two years of blogging it is probably time to rest this blog. Maybe just for a while, maybe for good, or maybe each year around April Fool’s Day. Whatever happens, I do thank all those who read, commented and subscribed. The NRCME is almost 2 years old now. We are all big boys and girls right? So let’s retire dotmedicalexaminerblog.com. Maybe come up for air sometimes. So here it goes. One final post, post number 90 on April fool’s day.
A short while back, during the back and forth and confusion that led to the FMCSA setting a release date for the revised forms and then postponing it to April 20, 2016, medical examiners received a bulletin explaining what is allowed and not allowed with the new revised forms.
For starters, those of you reluctant to transition to electronic DOT Medical Examination Forms may take solace in knowing that the FMCSA provides PDF versions of the Medical Examination Form at the NRCME and FMCSA websites. That can be useful in terms of legibility (if data is typed rather than handwritten) but it won’t make your office paperless, reduce clutter, facilitate data retrieval, electronic storage or data mining, as a true electronic DOT form would. For those capabilities see previous blog.
Prior to the Medical Examiner Certificate Integration Rule, results were allowed to be recorded “substantially in accordance with” the examination forms provided. Now, no more. You must use the revised forms “as is” (although some minor changes are allowed).
Minor changes allowed or permissible to Medical Examination Report Form MCSA-5875 (MERF):
- Bar code allowed on MCSA-5875 for purposes of forms management in your office (But it can not obstruct any content of the MERF).
- Instructions may be resized but must be readable.
- Instructions can be separated from MERF when presented to driver or to medical examiner.
- MERF can be stored or filed without instructions.
Minor changes allowed to Medical Examiner’s Certificate MCSA-5876 (MEC)
- MCSA-5876 can be reduced as long as readable.
Both MCSA-5875 and MCSA-5876 may be printed in black and white.
What is prohibited? Some prohibited changes include but is not limited to the following:
- Do not alter, add to or change the content or the location of content on the MERF MCSA-5875, MEC MCSA-5876, or instructions.
- Do not add company logo to the forms.
- Do not use the medical record number space on the MERF MCSA-5875 for social security number. Although a medical record number is not required on the form, the space can be used for other optional things like employee ID, driver ID or just left blank.
In the sample forms given by the FMCSA (see Resource Center of the NRCME) and the CMV Driver Medical Examination Form (MCSA-5850), the yellow highlighted areas depict changes as a result of the aforementioned Medical Examiner Certificate Integration Rule. Additional driver information is required, as well as new qualification categories. There is also the ability to input results from examinations performed in accordance with Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations with applicable State variances (a.k.a Intrastate variances or waivers) that will allow certain drivers to operate in Intrastate commerce.
Click here for FAQs for National Registry Driver Examination Forms published by the FMCSA regarding questions you may have about the revised forms: Anything from what the Medical Examiner’s Certificate Expiration Date is; when to use the State/Province selection (for Canadian drivers); what to do if a driver answers “not sure” to any questions on the MERF MCSA-5875; driving in exempted intra-city zone; issuing sequential 3 month medical cards; certification of drivers with applicable State variances; how to use the 45 day “Determination Pending” and complete the “Medical Examination Report Amended” selections; why the blood pressure “standard” (never was technically a standard but a guideline) was removed from the revised forms and much more.