The FMCSA has set a mandatory rule that any DOT-certified medical examiner must attend and finish an updated course every five years and maintain certification per the NRCME standards and requirements in ten-year intervals. It ensures that all medical examiners are informed of the most updated knowledge and standards to ensure public safety.
In 2023, the agency aims to create a helpful guide for DOT-certified medical examiners that will provide specific and important information about recertification.
An Updated Medical License is Important
It is essential to check your account to ensure that you don’t need to renew your professional license before beginning the recertification process for a DOT medical examiner. You must hold a valid and unrestricted certification license, which will be verified through the appropriate state licensing board by FMCSA. Any changes regarding the scope of practice that could affect this process should also be reported immediately within 30 days or risk suspension from performing certification exams altogether.
Your initial certification and recertification are nearly identical.
Recertifying is almost identical to obtaining your initial certification. Before anything else, you must participate in an online or physical training program from a nationally recognized medical professional with a curriculum that meets FMCSA requirements and offers Educational Units (EUs). After finishing the course, upload your certificate into your National Registry Account. Once done, contact Prometric or PSI to schedule your recertification exam.
Recertification Training and Testing will begin in 2023
Now is the ideal time to begin planning for your DOT Medical Examiner recertification. If you’ve been certified as an examiner for nine years or your certification has expired, you can enroll in a training and testing course starting January 1st, 2023. Since FMCSA did not offer the recertification process in prior years, many examiners will be vying for spots this year — so get ahead of the curve and ensure that you have plenty of time to take (or retake) the test by preparing early on.
Recertifying on your Ninth Anniversary
Starting in January 2023, medical examiners can begin their recertification process as soon as they enter their ninth year of certification. For instance, if your certificate expires in February 2024, you can begin training and sign up for an exam starting on February 2023. Similarly, those whose certifications expired in 2022 can participate the following year.
Recertification will take you a full year.
To protect the integrity of your certification, you must begin recertification training and schedule an exam within your ninth year. Once started, there is a full year for you to complete all the necessary components – taking into consideration the time needed to finish any courses and retaking exams if need be – before your certification expires.
Expired certifications remain valid until 2024
To ensure continued compliance, the FMCSA provides an extended grace period until December 2023. Suppose you must meet recertification requirements before the certification expires at the end of that year. In that case, FMCSA will remove your name from the National Registry, and you may receive a notification of your expired status. Despite this notice, you can continue using The National Registry System for examinations and qualifications; plus, you have up to 12 months to fulfill all conditions for recertification with FMCSA.
If you fail the first try, you can retake the test the next day.
Worry not – if you fail to pass your recertification exam on the first attempt, you can retake it in a span of one day to seven days. If your certification is still active, FMCSA will not remove you from the National Registry list. It allows for continued performance of DOT physicals until successful completion or expiration of the license. Should requirements remain uncompleted before their expiry date (except those expiring in 2023), then FMCSA will have no choice but to remove you from their registry system.
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