Things to Know about the DOT Physical Examination

DOT Physical Examinations

Federal law requires that drivers of commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) receive regular physical examinations. Also known as the Department of Transportation (DOT) Medical Examinations, the DOT physical examination must be administered by a licensed “medical examiner”, which are conveniently available at Healthpointe.

Healthpointe is staffed with licensed medical examiners that are available in over 11 clinical locations, including La Mirada, Long Beach, Los Angeles, Anaheim, Colton, Corona, Garden Grove, Irwindale, Perris, Ontario and Temecula! Our licensed medical examiners also work closely with other specialties, including physical therapy, orthopedic care, chiropractic care, acupuncture, weight management, and more!

What is a DOT Physical?

A DOT physical is designed to examine a driver’s physical, mental, and emotional status. The examination will also detect any issues or abnormalities that may affect their ability to safely function while driving for long hours.

How to Prepare for your Appointment

  • Like all medical examinations, make sure to bring your valid driver’s license.
  • Bring your eyeglasses, contact lenses, and/or hearing aids, if applicable.
  • Bring a list of medications, along with the name and contact information of your primary physician.
  • Wear loose clothing for the physical examination.
  • Do not use the restroom before the appointment. Patients will need to provide a urine sample to the examiner for evaluation.
  • Make sure to continue taking your prescribed medications as usual.
  • Bring your Medical release opinion letter from your primary doctor or specialist for any medical conditions that are being treated, or any recent illness, injury, or surgery, if applicable.
  • Bring any current FMCSA Waiver or Exemption Certificate or Skills Performance Evaluation, if applicable.

What to Expect During The Examination

  • The doctor will review your health history with you.
  • The doctor will conduct a thorough physical examination, including an evaluation of your vision, hearing, blood pressure/pulse rate, and overall physical ability.
  • The doctor will run a urine screen (dipstick test) for urine specific gravity, urine protein, urine blood, and urine sugar.

How Long Is A DOT Medical Card Good For?

  • If you meet all of the DOT Regulations for Commercial Driver Fitness, then you will receive a DOT medical card that is good for 2 years.
  • It may only be valid for 1 year or even 6 months if periodic monitoring is required for certain medical conditions.
  • A limited certificate, usually valid for 1 to 3 months may be issued if you have a recently diagnosed condition that you are working with your primary care doctor to get under control.

For more information on physicals, or if you wish to schedule an examination, then request an appointment today!

Medically Review by Dr. Roman Shulze


About Brandon Davila

Hello! This is Brandon Davila, the Content Manager of Healthpointe. I’m a lifelong learner and chronic book-reader with a strong passion for the healthcare industry and search engine optimization. For more of Brandon, check out his articles on the Healthpointe blog.

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