A commercial driver came into our office at Chiro Stop…
The driver, we’ll call him Tom, comes into the office yesterday, really p*ss*d off. He had been trying to get his DOT medical card from his usual doctor.
The doctor and his staff had been putting off Tom coming in for his DOT medical exam. The reason was that the doctor was “delayed in getting throughout the FMCSA material modules” and that he was “going to be on the National Registry soon”.
When Tom called and pressed for a date to take his DOT physical exam, the staff stated that their doctor was on the NRCME and the driver could get his examination done there. Tom goes into the office for the exam and asks – to verify the doctor is a DOT certified doctor on the NRCME – and is told “yes”.
Tom meets the qualifications and passes the DOT physical. He’s relieved that he has a new medical card before the old one expires.
Back at the front office, Tom is charged $140.00 for the DOT medical exam and an additional $90.00 for lab work, that according to the doctor is mandatory for the DOT examination. A total of $230.00 for a DOT exam and medical card. Tom questions the additional lab fees stating that it is not a part of the DOT examination and is told by the doctor that it’s a new rule. Tom pays and leaves with his new medical card and paperwork.
Tom then goes to the Utah drivers license office to turn in his self certification and a copy of his new medical card. The agent at Utah DPS checks his paperwork and tells Tom that his doctor is not listed on the FMCSA National Registry (NRCME) – That his medical is of no use to them!
Passed His DOT Physical Exam But His Medical Card Is Invalid
Tom may have QUALIFIED for a DOT Medical Card, but the card he has in hand is NOT VALID!
Now Tom is really peeved. Here is a driver who has been diddled around, overcharged, and has nothing that he can use to continue to drive. Tom calls a buddy to ask where to go to get a valid medical card, and he ends up here at Chiro Stop.
So, Tom walks into our office, really p*ss*d but very pleasant . His story takes a while to tell, but within 30 minutes he’s qualified – passed his DOT physical. He saves time because our office faxes all his paperwork to Utah DPS. We fax medical certification information routinely to Utah DPS, and they’re very helpful and efficient. If there is any question, they contact us immediately. We laminate a wallet medical card for Tom, give him copies of the medical examiner’s certificate and long form. Only $80 for everything. Tom walks out of our office a happy camper, valid medical card in hand, ready to head on down the road.
Put In A Nutshell
You Don’t Need To Be Ripped Off Under The New 2014 DOT Physical Exam Requirements
- As of May 21, 2014, interstate CMV drivers are required to obtain physical examinations and a medical examiner’s certificate from a certified medical examiner listed on the National Registry. Even if the doctor is in the process of getting certified, but not yet listed, the DOT physical and card will be invalid.
- Any mistakes written on the medical examiner’s certificate will invalidate the medical card.
- Be sure to check the DOT physical cost up front. Some DOT physical locations charge an additional fee for the urinalysis, which is a simple but required test to check for medical problems indicated by the kidneys.
- There are other pitfalls too – such as the big issue with sleep apnea screening – that a commercial driver renewing or getting a new DOT medical card, may not be aware of.
What is the cost to you of an invalid medical card? It pays to do your homework before you go for your next DOT physical exam. Ask other drivers about their experience and recommendations for a DOT physical location.
You don’t need to be ripped off on costs, hidden fees, and unnecessary add-on tests. But… “too much to pay” may be about more than just about dollars out of your pocket.
Looking for the cheapest DOT physical location may not serve you either if you can’t make an appointment, you’re kept waiting in line for hours, or you’re screened inappropriately for additional tests. What is your time worth to you? With a little inquiry you can find an affordable and convenient DOT physical doctor, and get your medical card the same day.