Audit Initiated of FAA’s Implementation of Small Aircraft Pilot Medical Reform
The United States has the largest and most diverse general aviation community in the world, with more than 220,000 aircraft. To help protect safety, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) establishes medical requirements for pilots of these aircraft. In January 2017, FAA issued new pilot medical requirements, known as BasicMed. Under BasicMed, pilots are now required to complete a medical education course, undergo a medical examination every 4 years with any State-licensed physician, and comply with aircraft and operating restrictions. To aid in their oversight of the new BasicMed process, the Chairmen of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure and its Aviation Subcommittee requested that we examine FAA's implementation of the new BasicMed requirements. Our audit objectives will be to assess (1) FAA’s procedures for implementing new medical requirements for certain small aircraft pilots, including identifying challenges to its implementation; and (2) FAA’s plans for measuring the impact of the new BasicMed process on aviation safety.