Everything You Need To Know About Taking The HGV Medical Exam

The laws in the UK require that HGV drivers need to be in good health to legally operate the commercial vehicles that drive on the public roads.

To this end, all new drivers have to undergo the HGV medical examination along with D4 paperwork which is then submitted to the DVLA by a doctor that performs these exams. Drivers need to undergo a medical examination each time they need to renew their license. The exam is the same whether you drive a bus or a lorry.

What Does the Driver’s Medical Involve?

The LGV Class 2 medical is made up of 2 parts:

  • The initial part involves an interview where the candidate and the doctor will talk about any type of existing medical conditions which may interfere with driving safely. The medical history of the candidate will also be discussed.
  • The 2nd part of this medical involves a physical exam, where the physician will check the candidate’s vision, vital signs, etc. the first and second part of this exam usually takes about 30 minutes to complete. During an exam, the attending doctor will complete the official DVLA form that they will then directly submit to the necessary authorities.

Who Is Allowed To Conduct The HGV Medical?

There are no “special” qualifications required to conduct HGV medical tests. In fact, any physician that is the UK registered can be used. This means you are able to use a private physician or an NHS GP in your area.

How Fit Do You Need to Be?

The doctor that conducts an HGV medical examination is looking at a few highly specific things. Provided you are in good health, there should be no issues with your exam. With this being said, any serious conditions that already exist might disqualify you from becoming a professional driver.

Here is the list of a few things the doctor is required to examine during your HGV medical:

 Eyesight

Eyesight requirements for HGV drivers are more strict than compared to those for car drivers. You have to be able to see well from each eye, without or with corrective lenses. If you do not have a vision in one of your eye’s, you might still qualify for professional driving if you are able to pass this vision test.

 Neurological Problems

Neurological issues can result in consequences that are serious for any type of driver. The physician will conduct the HGV candidate as well as ask questions that relate to factors like memory problems, blackouts, seizures, epilepsy and more.

 Mental Health

All HGV drivers have to be in a good state of mental health. Your doctor will discuss all types of mental health problems with you. This will include cognitive impairment, dementia, depression, anxiety or if you have ever been hospitalised for a psychiatric issue, etc.

 Drugs and Alcohol

It is obviously illegal that you operate an HGV when you have alcohol or drugs in your system. With this in mind, it is just about impossible for chronic drug or alcoholic users to hold down an HGV driving job. During your HGV medical, your doctor will look out for any signals of chronic alcohol or drug use.

 Diabetes

There might be a concern when it comes to drivers that require regular insulin in order to keep their diabetes under control. This condition does not necessarily disqualify a candidate from pursuing this career path, but they must prove that their condition is well managed.

 Heart Conditions

Even a heart condition that is benign may lead to problems that are more serious into the future. For this reason, doctors must check a candidate for a potential heart condition that includes aneurysms, PAD (peripheral arterial disease), murmurs and anything else related.

 Sleep Disorders

One of the main causes of serious accidents when it comes to HGV drivers is when they haven’t had enough sleep. For this reason, an HGV medical examination also includes checking for symptoms and signs of sleep deprivation or disorders. Sleep disorders do not result in an automatic disqualification provided the disorder is well managed, the student should usually be able to qualify.

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