All commercial truck drivers in the United States must pass a Department of Transportation (DOT) physical exam every two years to keep their commercial driving license valid. However, you may be wondering if you need to get another DOT physical exam if you have been recently injured in an accident and have been seeing a chiropractor for treatment? This article will discuss the difference between an MVR and a DOT physical exam and explain how a chiropractor can help you prepare for your next trip on the open road.
Can Chiropractors Handle DOT Physicals?
Yes, but only if they have the credentials. A Doctor of Chiropractic (DC) can apply for a special permit from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) to perform a pre-employment examination on any applicant who may be required to operate a commercial motor vehicle, such as an 18-wheeler. If a DC does not have the special permit, he or she can refer you to another healthcare professional who can perform DOT exams. However, it’s best to go with someone who knows your medical history and can catch anything out of the ordinary that might disqualify you from driving commercially.
Can Any Doctor Handle a DOT Physical?
Doctors before used to handle a DOT physical, but nowadays, doctors with specific training in occupational medicine are designated for the job. There are still instances where you will need a doctor’s help, such as if you have an illness that is chronic or acute or if you are on medication for high blood pressure and so on. If it is necessary for you to go to see your doctor, then your doctor will provide you with a letter stating that he has cleared your medical condition so that you can work and still mention any limitations in his letter. Some professionals eligible to handle a DOT physical include;
- Medical Doctors (MD)
- Physician Assistants (PA)
- Chiropractors (DC)
- Physical Therapists (DPT)
- Osteopaths (DO)
- Advanced Practice Nurses (APN)
- Naturopathic Doctor (ND)
Note that these professionals must have the right qualifications, and they should also be registered with the Department of Transportation. You should also know that not all practices offer DOT physicals, so be sure to ask before you make an appointment.
Qualifications of a Doctor to handle DOT Physicals?
The first qualification is that the doctor must have an intimate knowledge of internal medicine and advanced knowledge of toxicology. He or she must also be able to evaluate x-rays, perform EKGs, draw blood, and analyze urine samples. In addition, the physician should be knowledgeable in interpreting laboratory studies and interpreting electrocardiograms.
These should at least be 7 years out of medical school, and they must complete a residency program after graduating from medical school. The doctor should also have sited for the NRCME exam, which contains 120 questions related to all aspects of occupational medicine, and this exam lasts 2 hours. Passing this exam will allow them to receive a certificate for their license as an occupational physician.
To handle a DOT Physical, a doctor must hold a valid medical license with no restrictions in any state. The licensing board may check on the person’s credentials if complaints are filed against him/her. To acquire a license in one state does not mean he or she can practice elsewhere without having to retake the necessary exams.
Will the Kind of Doctor Who Handle my Physical Create a Difference?
It’s unlikely that the type of doctor who handles your physical will make a difference. You should consult with a physician who can perform your pre-employment medical examination. If you’re already under the care of a physician, ask them to perform the examination if they are licensed to do so. They may be able to save you time and money because they’ll have their equipment and supplies on hand. However, if this isn’t possible, find another doctor or clinic in your area familiar with DOT requirements and start there.
The Bottom Line
DOT physical exam is a must for anyone who drives, and it is often required by law. It is essential to be aware of your needs and requirements. If you have any questions or concerns about your current situation, contact the right professionals at a chiropractor center that offers auto accident or slip and fall injury services.