Commercial Drivers can now be on Insulin
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) will now allow certificated medical examiners to decide whether truck drivers with stable insulin-treated diabetes are qualified to drive.
Hypoglycemia is a major concern. Symptoms can occur when blood sugar drops to dangerously low levels and can include blurry vision, shaking, fatigue, and seizures.
Consistent with a plan first outlined in 2015, and contrary to the previous rule, the FMCSA will provide an assessment form to certified medical examiners for them to affirm a driver’s stable insulin regimen.
People with insulin-treated diabetes were prohibited from driving commercial vehicles unless they obtained an exemption from the FMCSA. The agency, which announced on the 18th of September, believes this process will maintain a high level of safety while eliminating financial and regulatory burdens for drivers with diabetes. The final rule will save FMCSA as much as $1 million per year from the reduction in costs associated with administering the exemption program.
The agency says the rule will become effective 60 days after it has been published in the Federal Register, and petitions to reconsider this rule will be accepted 30 days after the publication. Most supporters said the final version of the rule would place the process in the hands of a healthcare professional (rather than the agency); someone who would likely be responsible for prescribing insulin for the driver’s diabetes and providing documentation to a medical examiner that the driver’s condition is stable.